(WASHINGTON D.C.) – The Direct Selling Association (DSA) continues to support the FTC in its effort to protect consumers by acting against false product claims related to the COVID-19 virus. The agency recently issued cease and desist letters to several companies regarding inappropriate claims, including one DSA member company which reports that it is addressing the noted concerns with utmost seriousness.
“DSA statements and guidance issued since March of 2020 have been clear that unsubstantiated COVID-19 product claims and use of the pandemic to support the business opportunity are inappropriate. Any violation of DSA standards will be handled by our independent Code Administrator. Specifically, we have supported these statements and guidance with the launch of the Direct Selling Compliance Professional Certification Program last year and the creation of a Compliance Officers Council,” said Joseph N. Mariano, DSA president. “By identifying new ways to protect consumers and monitor the industry, DSA and its Board of Directors continue to work and establish strong compliance principles in the marketplace. We are committed to supporting rigorous consumer protection and ensuring there are no inappropriate claims as they can be dangerous and compromise the relationship our companies and salesforce members have with their customers.”
DSA member companies are committed to high ethical standards, broad regulatory compliance, and self-regulation. The industry’s self-regulation body applicable to all companies in direct selling, the Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council (DSSRC), an independent entity under the BBB National Programs established in partnership with DSA, has also acted against companies making inappropriate COVID-19 claims since the start of the pandemic and will continue doing so. To date, DSSRC has submitted nine cases to the FTC for false product claims related to COVID-19.
To report potentially inappropriate claims made by direct selling companies related to COVID-19 or the pandemic, please contact DSSRC or the DSA Code Administrator directly.
ABOUT THE DIRECT SELLING ASSOCIATION
For more than a century, the Direct Selling Association (DSA) has served as the national trade association for companies that offer entrepreneurial opportunities to independent sellers to market and sell products and services, typically outside of a fixed retail establishment. In 2020, direct selling took place across the United States, generating $40.1 billion in retail sales and 7.7 million entrepreneurs in the U.S. sold products or services through the direct selling channel, providing a personalized buying experience for 41.6 million preferred customers and discount buyers.
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