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Ottawa to slap daily fines on companies that don’t pull unsafe products

Health Minister Leona Aglukkaq says she is ‘concerned’ that women may not have been told of the Alysena recall in a timely manner.

Adrian Wyld/The Canadian Press

The federal government is going to impose fines of up to $25,000 a day on companies that don't remove unsafe consumer products from their shelves.

Health Minister Leona Aglukkaq is announcing this morning that a company that ignores government orders and deadlines to withdraw unsafe goods will be handed a stiff fine.

Non-profits will face daily penalties of about $5,000, but other firms could face much higher fines depending on their track record.

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However, Aglukkaq says most companies voluntarily comply with recalls.

Details of the penalty regime were put before the public in draft form more than a year ago, but are only being brought into force now.

They are an addition to the Consumer Products Safety Act, which also took years to wind its way through the legislative process because of criticism it gave the minister too much power in the commercial affairs of small business.

"Canadian consumers expect the products they pick up on store shelves to be safe for them and their families," Aglukkaq says. "By introducing significant fines for companies who violate orders to recall unsafe products, our government is ensuring that companies who break the law will pay the price."

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