The Standards Council of Canada (SCC) works with government and industry to support the use of standards as a means to protect the well-being of Canadians. When used as a complement to regulation, standards can help to safeguard the health and safety of Canadian citizens and ensure market access by certifying compatibility. Over 5,000 references to standards are included in Canadian federal, provincial and territorial regulations.
Standardization consists of standards and the assessment of conformity to these standards (through testing and certification). It is one of the tools that policy makers use when drafting government regulations. There are many reasons why standardization can be particularly effective for meeting regulatory objectives, including:
- Standards reflect input from a diverse group of stakeholders;
- Standards are cost-effective, reliable, and relatively easy to review and update;
- Standards reflect the latest trends in innovations and technologies;
- Standards that are regional or international help facilitate trade;
- Standards in regulations can help support a coherent regulatory system, which fosters innovation;
- Conformity assessment supports regulatory enforcement and monitoring;
- Conformity assessment supports trade and economic growth where there are agreements for international acceptance of results
- Accredited conformity assessment services are a trusted and often less costly alternative to government-administered inspections.
Standards, when effectively referenced in regulations, allow governments to leverage the expertise and work of Canada’s extensive standardization network. For more information on the use of standards in regulations and why it is important to reference standards properly, read the article “Standards as Elements of the Regulatory Regime” originally published in Standards Engineering: The Journal of SES – The Society for Standards Professionals.