The marketing behaviours and business practices of moneylending companies during the Covid-19 pandemic have been called into question by Dublin South Central Sinn Féin TD Aengus Ó Snodaigh.
Teachta Ó Snodaigh said:
“I have been contacted by a number of community groups and social poverty NGOs who have advised that certain moneylending companies are blatantly targeting certain societal groups and locations during the Covid-19 pandemic at a time when many families are facing financial hardship.
“I am calling on the Central Bank to demand that they rein in these exploitative behaviours of moneylenders who need to stop pushing highly expensive credit on families that are already under huge pressure, with many people losing their jobs in the recent period.
“I encourage people to engage with their banks, credit unions, social welfare offices, MABS and voluntary groups like St. Vincent De Paul during this period to put in place arrangements or in some cases to access emergency money.
“These moneylenders that are offering easy and quick money charge interest rates of up to 187% on loans and they get vulnerable people into a never ending cycle of debt.
“The question of these moneylending companies adhering to current public health guidelines must also be asked when door-to-door knocking, face-to-face conversations at doors and leaflet dropping in targeted areas has been raised with me as taking place.
“These moneylenders need to stop these practices now and State agencies and the government need to impose restrictions immediately”.