In 2021, we continued to learn how to live and work while carefully managing the impact of COVID-19. At Advocis, this was manifested not only in the excellent work of our staff and volunteers, but also in how the pandemic has taught us to understand and simplify the things that matter most. By sharply focusing on our three key pillars of Advocacy, Professional Development and Community, we are continuing to emerge from these challenging times as a smarter, more agile, and more effective Association that is prepared to meet the challenges of the future.
On the regulatory front, Advocis continued to act as the voice of our profession in what was a remarkably busy year. We are supporting efforts by the CCIR to create FTC rules that are fair to both consumers and the diversity of business models in the insurance space, encouraging a balanced approach to the CSA’s creation of a single consolidated SRO, and have succeeded in making key arguments in how the CSA can take a commonsense approach to outside activity reporting. We have also prioritized making the voice of our members heard as FSRA continues to move forward with the process of implementing title protection in Ontario. Our view is that the way in which this legislation is enacted will not only dramatically shape how the interests of consumers are taken into consideration, but that it will also be watched closely by other provincial regulators as they evaluate their own activities in this space.
Of course, with title protection comes the need to raise the professional bar to meet the standards of competency that said protection deserves. Therefore, professional development remains a key priority at Advocis along multiple avenues – including the development of programs geared specifically towards enabling advisors to meet the standards that title protection will require. We also continue to develop our PFA and CLU programs to align with the continuing needs of advisors, and look forward to refreshing our CHS program while strategically planning the development of our PIA (Professional Insurance Advisor) program for launch sometime in 2024.
Finally, as our members and clients ponder which educational path is right for them, we also continue to help them develop their advisory careers through exceptional community offerings. Coffee Talks, the Advocis Book Club, Taste of the Schools and Symposium were all tremendously successful in online formats throughout 2021, and by the time our next Annual Report is published I hope to be looking back on the return of live events as well. As we look forward to the future in this and every other way, we hope that you will join us.
Greg Pollock, CFP, M.Ed., L.L.M., C.Dir.
President and CEO, Advocis,
The Financial Advisors Association of Canada