Always happy to assist with a worthy cause, and among the many, many petitions I am asked to sign, some I feel worthy of giving further publicity by posting here. This is one of them (obviously!)
| Dear Martin, |
Last year was the first time I ever went to a loan shark – my kids have their birthdays really close together and the budget was tight. I’d tried to save for it but there’d been some unexpected costs. I didn’t want to let them down so I borrowed $400. It was easy – I went online and had approval in a matter of minutes. I’d have to pay back nearly twice that, but that was going to be OK once things picked up. I made the first couple of payments, but then I missed one. That was the start of a debt spiral. There were weeks where I was choosing between paying for electricity and paying for food. Meeting the loan repayments was the most important thing because if you don’t the debt grows so big so quickly! Sometimes I’d have to top a loan up just so I could meet the repayments on it and feed my kids. It made the debt bigger but it delayed the worst of the pain. I was always anxious. With help, I’ve got it under control, but I’m still going to have to pay back way more than I borrowed. It doesn’t have to be this way. Predatory lending can be stopped. In fact right now the government is putting together a new law to do exactly that. The only problem is it won’t work because they aren’t putting an interest rate cap into it, even though the Prime Minister herself said they would crack down on loan sharks.1 We can change their mind. This Government says it wants to fix child poverty. I know from first hand experience that they need to get rid of predatory lending to do that. Martin, we can put pressure on them to stand by their word and make the new law work.
Will you tell them to do what’s right and cap interest rates on predatory lending?
LET’S STOP LOAN SHARKS TOGETHER
Last week was my birthday. The loan shark I borrowed from sent me an email that said something like “Happy Birthday Sarah – how about you treat yourself with a loan?” I felt ill. Let’s fix this together. Thank you, Sarah Newham
P.S. there’s more background about this campaign here. 1.https://www.tvnz.co.nz/one-news/new-zealand/well-crack-down-loan-sharks-says-ardern-in-visit-south-auckland-food-bank
Authorised by Sam Huggard, Level 5, 178 Willis Street Wellington
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