News from ACORN Canada on Payday Lending

The Government of Ontario is accepting feedback on its new report on payday lending created out of a consultation process (click here to read the report). Now is YOUR chance to have your say on regulating the predatory payday loan industry!  Urgent - send the government an email in support of ACORN Canada’s demand for real protections for low income families.

The government consultations were consensus between the payday lenders themselves and other groups including ACORN Canada.  Hence any discussion about lowering the fees and real consumer protections were squashed pretty quickly by the lenders. 

Click here to email the Ontario Ministry of Government and Consumer Services with our demands!

The payday loan industry preys on low income Canadians, trapping them in a vicious cycle of debt through hidden fees and high interest rates. In 2008, ACORN members fought and won the Payday Lending Act in Ontario. However, we are still being gouged! According to new research by St. Michael’s Hospital, adults who live in neighbourhoods with a higher density of payday lenders are more likely to die prematurely than those who don’t [click here to learn more]. We need action now!

Click here to email the Ontario Ministry of Government and Consumer Services with our demands!

ACORN Canada’s demands:

The Ontario Ministry of Government and Consumer Services needs to understand the harm payday loans have on low income communities and implement real consumer protections – see below:

  • Lower fees! – Fees should be no higher than $15 on $100.  Right now in Ontario fees are $21 on $100 – that’s 500% compound interest!
  • Alternative institutions should be supported/created, like credit unions and postal banking, to carry these types of products in a non-predatory way at much lower interest rates!  Vancity in BC offers a product that is radically more fair: borrow $100, pay it back in two months and pay only $2.38 on the loan!
  • Roll over loans need to stop! – The government needs to set up a real time industry database so they can enforce the existing ban on rollover loans.
  • Loan term:  Lenders should give customers a longer period of time to repay the loan than the two weeks that they ordinarily give now.  Legislation should require the loan term to be no less than two weeks per every $50 loaned and customers should be allowed to pay the loan back in installments rather than in one lump sum. This allows customers a better chance of paying off the loan rather than defaulting. In addition, borrowers should be allowed to make partial payments on the loan at any time without charge. (In BC the trigger is three loans within a 62-day period, then lenders offer an option to repay (without penalty) in installments over a 30 day period).

Click here to email these demands directly to the Ontario Ministry of Government and Consumer Services. Let’s show the predatory lenders that they can’t get away with gouging low income Canadians!

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