27 November 2015
By Bryan T. Smyth
A new personal loan scheme that helps social welfare recipients is now available in certain credit unions across Cork. The ‘It Makes Sense Loan’ was launched on Thursday and is available from Skibbereen Credit Union, in West Cork.
The move that has been welcomed by local Labour TD Michael McCarthy who said it will go a long way towards tackling local moneylenders, many of whom are known to target vulnerable households at this time of year. As Christmas fast approaches, demands increase on peoples’ purse strings and so it is tempting to get money from sources which make it easy, hassle free and provide money within a day. However, what they don’t tell you is that you will pay a price for this short loan up to 200% interest in some cases.”
Deputy McCarthy said: “Access to low cost credit is often outside the reach of many families. This pilot scheme will help take families out of the arms of high cost moneylenders. I’m glad that Credit Unions in Cork will partake in the scheme because it will help combat local moneylenders who charge exorbitant rates.
“This is low-cost personal credit scheme is aimed at people in West Cork on social welfare who may need access to borrowings at short notice but don’t want to be penalised by high interest rates. The thinking behind the scheme is that it provides local, easily accessible and low-cost loans to those who need them.
“People can borrow from between €100 to €2,000, and most importantly, the interest rate will not exceed 12%. It is open to social welfare recipients and they will be able to use the Household Budgeting Service run by An Post to manage repayments. An Post have also been a crucial partner in the development of this service.
“The ‘It Makes Sense Loan’ was launched by my colleagues Tanaiste Joan Burton and Minister Kevin Humphreys today. It demonstrates how Labour are standing up for people in local communities who are finding it difficult to make ends meet and need vital support.”