Budget announcement on breathing space 'a call to arms' to tackle debt misery, says Citizens Advice
Citizens Advice has responded to the government announcement on debt breathing space and interest-free loans.
Gillian Guy, Chief Executive of Citizens Advice, said:
“Improvements to the breathing space scheme and a proposal for an interest-free-loan scheme are welcome news from Treasury.
“We expect this lead to be a call to action to the public and private sectors, and to regulators, to tackle the misery of debt and help more than one million people who are forced to turn to high-cost credit.
“The government should now reinforce these initiatives by overhauling its own debt collection practices, including regulating bailiffs. It should also ensure specialist debt advice is readily available for people alongside breathing space and that the Financial Conduct Authority cap the cost of rent-to-own agreements by April 2019.”
Notes to editors
- The Citizens Advice service comprises a network of local Citizens Advice, all of which are independent charities, the Citizens Advice consumer service and national charity Citizens Advice. Together we help people resolve their money, legal and other problems by providing information and advice and by influencing policymakers. For more see the Citizens Advice website.
- The advice provided by the Citizens Advice service is free, independent, confidential and impartial, and available to everyone regardless of race, gender, disability, sexual orientation, religion, age or nationality.
- To get advice online or find your local Citizens Advice in England and Wales, visit citizensadvice.org.uk
- You can get consumer advice from the Citizens Advice consumer service on 03454 04 05 06 or 03454 04 05 05 for Welsh language speakers.
- Local Citizens Advice in England and Wales advised 2.5 million clients on 6.2 million problems in 2014/15. For full service statistics see our publication Advice trends.
- Citizens Advice service staff are supported by more than 21,000 trained volunteers, working at over 2,500 service outlets across England and Wales.