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Sinn Féin support Advice NI’s concerns on Loan Sharks

20 November, 2008 - by Jennifer McCann


Sinn Féin support Advice NI's concerns on Loan Sharks

West Belfast Sinn Fein MLA Jennifer Mc Cann has supported the call of Advice NI for an campaign to warn people about loan sharks.

Ms McCann said:

"Loan Sharks and those who offer credit to people at exorbitant interest rates. They are currently exploiting peoples financial difficulties particularly in the run up to Christmas.

Information offering loans and credit are being put through peoples doors and loans sharks are actually doing door to door sales calls. It's understandable how people who are in financial difficulties take up those offers.

"However the small print doesn't explain the exorbitant interest rates they charge particularly if you miss repayments. The result is more and more vulnerable people are getting into debt that they can't afford to pay back.

"I would appeal to the Executive to take forward a number of measures that have been put forward by organisations like Advice NI to firstly make people aware of the way these loan sharks work and to use existing loan opportunities such as the Social Security Social Fund Loans as alternatives for people who need to access credit.

"These Social Security Fund Loans should be utilised for those who are in debt to be able to access money for the likes of necessities and pressing bills.

"I would also ask that the legislation to enable Credit Unions here to offer increased services to their members be brought forward so that people have access to credit without being exploited."

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