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Loan Sharks in Cheshire East

Loan Sharks

 

There was strong cross party support for a motion tackling ‘Legal Loan Sharks’ proposed by Cllr Sam Corcoran (Labour & Co-operative) at the Full Council Meeting on 28 February.

 

Cllr Sam Corcoran proposed a motion to last week’s meeting of Cheshire East Council which draws attention to the End Legal Loan Sharking Campaign and seeks to promote affordable credit and financial literacy, in particular through credit unions.

 

Cllr Sam Corcoran said,

 

‘This motion sends a message that Cheshire East Council is serious about supporting our residents who are facing financial hardship. We support the national campaign to cap the amount  that ‘Legal Loan Sharks’ can charge for loans, and we are committed to doing what we can locally to support our local credit unions, and to discourage legal loan sharks.”

 

 

 

Cllr Michelle Sherratt, who seconded the motion, said,

 

“Residents of Crewe are calling for action against legal loan sharks. Over the past couple of years they have proliferated in our area and the tough financial climate means more and more people are turning to them and the extortionate loans which they offer.”

 

The motion agreed at full council read as follows:

 

Cheshire East Council

 

Notes and welcomes the UK-wide campaign to end ‘legal loan sharking’.

 

Believes that the lack of access to affordable credit is socially and economically damaging. Unaffordable credit is causing a myriad of unwanted effects such as poorer diets, colder homes, rent, council tax and utility arrears, depression (which impacts on job seeking behaviour) and poor health.

 

Further notes that unaffordable credit is extracting wealth from the most deprived communities.

 

Believes it is the responsibility of all levels of government to try to ensure affordable credit for all, and therefore pledges to use best practice to promote financial literacy and affordable lending. This will help to ensure that wealth stays in the local economy.

 

Pledges to promote credit unions in Cheshire East, community-based co-operative organisations offering access to affordable credit and promoting saving, to all members of the community.

 

Will work to make credit union payroll deduction facilities available to council staff to facilitate easy access to local credit unions and support saving for people in the area.

 

Calls on the government to introduce caps on the total lending rates that can be charged for providing credit.

 

Calls on the government to give local authorities the power to veto licences for high street credit agencies where they could have negative economic or social impacts on communities.

 

Notes:

 

Further information on the issue can be found on websites of  the Co-operative Party and of Stella Creasy, the Labour & Co-operative MP who has been leading the campaign in Parliament.

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