Consumer Policy Institute is a division of Energy Probe Research Foundation. Incorporated in 1980, Energy Probe is a federally recognized charitable organization, financially independent of governments and corporations.
EPRF has always promoted development that furthered our social, economic and environmental well-being. Some parts of our foundation focus on protecting the environment while respecting our social and economic needs. CPI focuses on our social and economic needs while respecting environmental needs. In an increasingly globalized economy, with a constantly-evolving communications and media sector and greater trade liberalization eroding the power of regional, national, and international authorities, the influence of individuals and their local communities continues to grow. A concern for our more immediate “social environments” or “human ecology” now accompanies our work to protect the natural environment. Ultimately, CPI advocates for the rights of consumers so that they can receive services at the lowest cost.
Because the empowerment of individuals and of small communities is so vital to the well-being and stability of this new human ecology, empowerment is a central theme in CPI’s work. Equally important to CPI’s mission is an understanding that individuals’ empowerment can become mere anarchy or oppression if it is not rooted in by a sense of responsibility to each other and to the natural world.
CPI’s offers a collection of articles and research papers that the organization has produced in the past. While the division has been largely quiet since 2005, the heightened debate surrounding public transit systems, healthcare costs and the role of government in the housing market has led EPRF to reopen the division. Brady Yauch was appointed Executive Director and Economist in the summer of 2013.
Canada’s public transit monopolies are woefully inadequate and overly expensive. CPI seeks to introduce competition to Canada’s public transit systems by breaking up monopolies, which would improve service and lower costs. Existing public transportation monopolies such as the Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) are already at their breaking point and are failing to deliver the type of services needed for a growing population. It’s time that a new model of transportation is considered.
Canada’s housing market avoided the collapse in prices experienced in many other developed countries throughout 2008 and 2009 and subsequent financial crisis. But the public sector’s role in the housing market in Canada — a practice which led to government bailouts in many other countries — has in no way diminished. The government’s support of the housing market through public insurance has never been a greater; the impact of this support has helped to push up prices and put taxpayers across the country at risk of a potentially massive bailout. CPI advocates the end of government intervention and costly subsidies in the housing market.
To protect and promote Canadian Medicare we have proposed a model of publicly funded health allowances or Medical Savings Accounts that finds true efficiencies while maintaining the Canada Health Act’s five principles. The thrust of our work is to restore the integrity of the relationship between physicians and their doctors by empowering patients.
CPI has in the past called for the sale for full market value of Canada’s federally-owned airports, which we argued would yield billions of dollars in immediate revenue for the cash-strapped government, as well as hundreds of millions a year in ongoing tax revenue. Consumer Policy Institute’s study, Benefitting Consumers and the Economy Through Airport Privatization informed Canadians of the benefits of selling federal airports to the public.