Sunday, 24 February 2013

Campaign against UK loan sharks starts

Campaign against UK loan sharks starts Sun, 24 Feb 2013 08:57:39 GMT.......... Campaigners have launched a "Sharkstoppers" movement to challenge pay-day loan companies that target Britain's poorest households, who fall victim as a result of massive government cuts. The British federation of trade unions, Trades Union Congress (TUC) as well as credit unions, advice agencies and housing associations joined the move to prevent the public from turning to unscrupulous loan sharks at the time of economic crisis. The group announced they will be active on February, 24 in Newcastle city in north-east England, where the people have been battered by the coalition government's austerity measures the hardest, have the lowest household incomes in Britain and the highest unemployment rate. The campaigners promised to promote alternatives to loan sharks as well as warning British people about the industry which is now turning over £8.5 billion. "Legal loan sharks are cynically trying to prey on the most vulnerable people but trade unions and other groups are campaigning hard to expose them and promote credit unions as the affordable alternative,” said Northern TUC regional secretary Kevin Rowan. Last year, pay-day lender and loan shark Wonga registered profits of £46 million by ripping-off people with a shocking interest rate of 4,214 per cent annually. Critics believe turning to money lenders is the last resort for people at a time when the British government is imposing indiscriminate spending cuts regardless of their impacts on the poor. ==

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