Newport council blocks access to pay-day loan websites
8:29am Saturday 14th December 2013 in Gwent news
ACCESS will be blocked to high-interest, short-term or “pay-day” loan sites on all Newport council and public-access computers, it has been decided.
Not only will sites be restricted but, in a bid to prevent households getting trapped in a cycle of debt, users trying to visit such sites will be redirected to a page detailing alternative information and links to organisations that can help with debt management.
Cllr Ray Truman, deputy leader of Newport council, said: “I am acutely aware of the severe financial challenges facing some of our residents on a daily basis. It is hugely frustrating that in a modern day economy we use the terms child poverty, fuel poverty and food banks on a daily basis.
“I understand that some people are in extremely difficult financial positions and while a short-term loan might provide a one-off solution for those who can manage and afford it, for others it is the start of a vicious circle of increasing debt.”
Cllr Tom Bond, Newport council’s anti-poverty champion, said: “Many people who look for a loan online are often unaware that there are others ways to tackle their problems and organisations that can provide help and advice. The council is working with Newport Credit Union to try and reduce the take-up of such loans in the city.”
The policy will be implemented early next year.
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