Responding to the launch of a financial advice service for borrowers in mortgage arrears today Sinn Féin Spokesperson Aengus Ó Snodaigh said anything to assist those in mortgage arrears is welcome but this is little more than a token gesture.
“In the absence of pressure from government to make mortgages on family homes sustainable through some form of debt right-down by the banks all this service will offer to many is a meaningless assessment of their finances.
“In addition, by limiting the service to mortgage debt only, the growing crisis of unsecured debt is ignored. The fact that 300,000 people are in arrears on their energy bills this week is further evidence of the need for more comprehensive action by government.
“Consideration should be given to having the Money Advice and Budgeting Services (MABS) oversee the new service. This would enhance public confidence in its independence and MABS could bring its expertise and understanding of people’s wider debt problems to bear.”