A Canadian Vantage Point
Competition Act ( R.S.C. , 1985, c. C-34)

Understanding Accreditation Through the Lens of Competition 

What does accreditation mean?
"Accreditation is formal, third-party recognition that an organization is competent to perform specific tasks.  Accreditation can be voluntary or mandated by the government.  

Voluntary Compliance and Understanding the Competition Bureau (CB) of Canada's Framework
​The term "framework" is a comprehensive, integrated, and flexible approach to achieving compliance.

Why Competition Matters
Not only does a fair and competitive market build a more robust economy, but it is also a catalyst for innovation to increase productivity and quality. A vibrant open marketplace enhances the affordability and accessibility of goods and services, benefiting consumers, businesses, and other relevant stakeholders such as the public and private sectors.  

Canada's Competition Act is administered and enforced by the Commissioner of Competition (the “Commissioner”) and the Commissioner’s staff, the Competition Bureau (the “Bureau”). The Bureau is part of the Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada portfolio.

Benefits of Fair Competition in an Open Marketplace

  • a healthy competitive economy increases productivity and benefits everyone with lower and competitive pricing and more choices,
  • it provides consumers with the information they need to make informed decisions,
  • it strengthens businesses’ ability to adapt and compete at home and in global markets,
  • it stimulates an efficient economy and encourages growth,
  • it gives small and medium-sized businesses a better chance to compete and participate in the economy, and 
  • it balances the interests of consumers and producers, retailers, dominant, mid-size and minor players, and the public and private interests. Source: https://www.competitionbureau.gc.ca/eic/site/cb-bc.nsf/eng/h_00125.html

What is third-party accreditation?
​Third-party program accreditation is achieved through assessments conducted by an impartial body (third-party) that recognizes the organization's competence to conform to specific requirements to which they are accredited. This process is beneficial for monitoring quality and managing risk.  

Animal-Assisted Human Services {AAHS} is a self-regulated, highly fragmented industry {human services} sector. 

The term 'accreditation' within the AAHS industry sector does not refer to or imply a ‘third party’ contractual or governmental accreditation through regulatory requirements. But instead, an internal process suggesting a degree of self-attestation and peer reviews that determine an organization’s benchmarks or private company standard operating procedures for brand performance and recognition.