Standards are documents that describe the important features of a product, service or system. There are thousands of standards in use around the world that cover everything from the simplest screw thread to the most complex information technology network.
Standards can help organizations ensure their products and services are consistent, compatible, effective and safe. They also help the public understand these important safety requirements.
Most standards are voluntary – there are no laws requiring their application –but an increasingly competitive marketplace for goods and services means that more and more customers are demanding adherence to specific standards. Governments also make some standards mandatory, referencing them in legislation or through regulations.
The Standards Council of Canada (SCC) does not develop standards itself, but it plays the important role of coordinating standards work and ensuring Canada’s input on standards issues in international standards organizations. SCC accredits standards development organizations (SDOs) and also approves standards as National Standards of Canada (NSC) on a specific set of requirements/in a particular subject area.
Thousands of volunteers — users, manufacturers, consumers, contractors, engineers, architects, government representatives, researchers, and other experts — are involved in writing and updating Canadian standards. But for a standard to be recognized in Canada, it must be developed by an SCC-accredited SDO and submitted to SCC, to ensure the standard meets the necessary criteria to become an NSC
SDOs are also responsible for the maintenance of any NSC they publish and must subject the NSC to a review within five years of its development.
Before granting an SDO accreditation to SCC’s Standards Development Program, SCC evaluates the SDO’s processes and practices, to ensure they meet the requirements set out in CAN-P-1 - Program Requirements for the accreditation of Standards Development Organizations and for the Approval of National Standards of Canada.
SDOs seeking accreditation to SCC’s Standards Development Program must also comply with the following requirements:
- CAN-P-15 – Policy for the Suspension and Withdrawal of Accreditations and the Resolution of Complaints and Appeals
- CAN-P-1020 - Program Requirements for SDO Accreditation to CAN-P-1
For more information
Contact Karyn Crawford, Program Manager, Technical Services, firstname.lastname@example.org or +1 613 238 3222, ext. 317.