‘Canadian Mounties’ visit Money Shop in UEL demo on payday loans

Campaigners are deploying their own ‘Canadian ‘Mounties’ to hand out maple-flavoured sweets to shoppers in a demonstration outside branches of a pay-day loan company in east London this-afternoon.

They are using Canada Day to call on The Money Shop to “raise its standards” in line with its franchises in Canada.

It is part of a campaign by students from the University of East London and the Whitechapel-based London Citizens civic organisation on the day the government holds a summit into tightening regulations on payday lending.

“The money-lending sector is unregulated,” explained campaigner Natalie Downs, a former Money Shop customer.

“I took out a payday loan while waiting for my student loan—but no-one advised me of the interest I would incur if I didn’t pay this back on time.

“It was all too easy to rollover the loan and very soon £400 became £900.”

The ‘Mounties’ turn up outside Money Shop’s East Ham branch in High Street North at 3.30pm, with other demonstrations planned at branches in Bethnal Green and Brixton, as well as the company’s Nottingham headquarters.

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They have a meeting with the company’s Corporate Affairs director to hand over 1,000 signed letters explaining what they think needs to change.

Campaign leader Luke Goss said: “Canada Day is the perfect opportunity to see The Money Shop take the initiative and bring its Code of Best Business Practice they use in Canada to their UK operations.”

The campaigners want the practices of rolling over loans and sale of multiple loans to be stopped and to display information on free debt counselling in all branches.

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