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Telstra apologized for targeting poor people in indigenous communities and offering priceless telephone contracts (photo: Telstra sign)

Telstra apologizes for targeting poor people living in indigenous communities by selling them phones they couldn't afford

  • The problem was tackled on Thursday with the telco that apologized to its customers
  • Telstra said they did not meet their standards and those of the customer
  • Caitlyn Roe received a & # 39; free phone & # 39; offered, but was hit with $ 2,000 data costs
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Telstra has admitted to poor selling practices towards vulnerable indigenous communities by selling them telephone contracts that they could not afford.

Fiona Hayes, Director of Retail and Regional at Telstra, discussed the problem on Thursday at the Aboriginal Economic Development Forum at the Darwin Convention Center.

She apologized and said that the standards they had set themselves, as well as the standards that customers held them responsible, were not met.

& # 39; This was an uncomfortable truth for us & # 39 ;, she said according to the ABC.

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& # 39; The main concern is that this behavior was sufficient to break the trust that we want to have with our customers in the community. & # 39;

She said that Telstra has spoken to those affected by the hefty bills and that there are & # 39; very important disciplinary measures & # 39; would be for partners who have done something wrong.

& # 39; It is absolutely not acceptable. & # 39;

Telstra apologized for targeting poor people in indigenous communities and offering priceless telephone contracts (photo: Telstra sign)

Telstra apologized for targeting poor people in indigenous communities and offering priceless telephone contracts (photo: Telstra sign)

Broome wife and mother of a Caitlyn Roe, 21, was the target of Telstra after her local store informed her that she was eligible for a & # 39; free phone & # 39; if she signed a contract with the company.

She had used a prepaid Telstra phone for years, but was convinced to switch to a telephone subscription after she felt that it had been explained to her correctly.

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The first months went smoothly, but then she was hit with redundant data costs for an amount of $ 2,200.

& # 39; With all that data, it shot up. Some people who supported me spoke to Telstra to lower the price, but they said no, & Mrs. Roe said.

& # 39; That was quite difficult at the time, because I also struggled with other things, such as trying to feed my daughter. & # 39;

After she had been unable to cover the debt, Mrs. Roe received a letter from a collection agency that had taken over her account from Telstra, and she was threatened with legal action.

Mrs. Roe eventually received a complete debt cancellation and standard removal as a possible solution.

Caitlyn Roe (photo) was the target of Telstra after being approached by her local store to let her know that she was eligible for a & # 39; free phone & # 39; if she signed a contract with the company
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Caitlyn Roe (photo) was the target of Telstra after being approached by her local store to let her know that she was eligible for a & # 39; free phone & # 39; if she signed a contract with the company

Caitlyn Roe (photo) was the target of Telstra after being approached by her local store to let her know that she was eligible for a & # 39; free phone & # 39; if she signed a contract with the company

Since then, new measures have been implemented by Telstra to help customers in rural and indigenous areas.

Telstra & # 39; s apology comes five months after the The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) launched an investigation into whether the telco has violated consumer legislation by selling priceless contracts to vulnerable people.

& # 39; The ACCC is investigating allegations from Telstra Corporation Ltd regarding its sales practices related to the delivery of cell phones, plans and related goods and services to some vulnerable indigenous Australian people, & # 39; according to a statement from ACCC.

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& # 39; The assessment of the alleged behavior is ongoing, including any implications under Australian consumer legislation.

& # 39; Behavior that affects native Australians is a continuing priority for the ACCC. & # 39;

Daily Mail Australia has contacted Telstra for comments.

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