Tuesday, 12 April 2011

Speak out about the legal loan sharks in your area!

Post from Alan Thornton, Church Action on Poverty

There is growing anger that thousands of low-income families are being charged 500% APR for credit - and sometimes much more. 

Church Action on Poverty have set up a special web page so you can quickly and easily write to the letters page of your local newspaper to raise this issue. 

This country is unusual in that credit companies can charge whatever they want as long as there are people desperate enough or with few choices. Contrast this with the USA, Canada, France, Germany and many other countries which have legal ceilings to protect consumers from extortionate lending.

For too long, the legal loan sharks in the UK have won the argument about the risks of legal caps on the total cost of credit. Earlier this year, over 400 MPs voted for the new finance regulator (the Financial Conduct Authority) to look seriously into the issue. And 150 of these MPs weren’t satisfied to wait for next year when the new body is set up for low-income customers to get the protection which citizens in much of Europe and North America already have. 

Oh, and Stella Creasy MP, who initiated the debate, especially thanked all the activists who took part!

To help raise awareness of this issue in your area, please spend a few minutes writing to your local newspaper’s letters page. Please visit this special web page now - it will find the details for your local paper, and give you some ideas of what you can write. 



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