Posted on November 15, 2019
At the provincial day of action that ACORN members do every month across Ontario,members got together to fight back high interest rates charged by money lenders such as Money Mart, Easy Financial, Cash Money and several others. Members are fed up paying back huge amounts and still owing money.
ACORN members have been fighting for years to end this predatory form of lending. We have advocated with city governments to bring in regulatory changes which have cities of Toronto, Hamilton, Ottawa and several others bring in stronger protections for people. However, as we work closely with cities, we need the provincial government of Ontario to step in and take measures to regulate this highly unregulated financial sector and end predatory lending.
ACORN members submitted a letter to the Minister of Government and Consumer Services with the following demands:
Lower the interest rate of installment loans to 30%.
Stop predatory insurance, forced on consumers.
Extend payday loan repayment period, similar to Alberta’s repayment extension to 60 days.
Enforce the ban on rollover loans by creating a user real-time database.
Create protections for installment / rent-to-own / title loans.
Mandate creation of alternative low-interest loan products.
Here is a brief account of what members did in Hamilton, Ottawa and Toronto.
Hamilton: 13 ACORN members marched for fair banking this morning in East Hamilton. Members gathered at Barton St E and Kenilworth Ave N to tour the many predatory lenders in the area. Members shared stories of their own experience with payday and installment loans and the need for low interest alternative credit! Members stopped at four predatory lenders - Fairstone, Easy Financial, Cash Max and Cash Depot to deliver demand letters. Hamilton ACORN joins Ottawa and Toronto ACORN this week calling on the province to immediately bring in protections for people and lower interest rates!
Ottawa: ACORN members were joined by union allies in Ottawa at a petition action for Fair Banking outside a Money Mart store that now offers instalment loans. Members beat the cold by having several passers by signing our petitions to stop predatory lending.
Toronto: Eight ACORN members rallied outside the Ministry of Government and Consumer Services today to demand the province step in and stop predatory installment lenders from charging 60% interest rates! Members rallied outside and got 18 signatures for ACORNs Anti-Predatory Lending petition. Meanwhile, a group of members snuck past security inside the building to deliver a letter of demands to Minister Lisa Thompson. ACORN is calling on the province to immediately bring in protections and lower the interest rates!
Members continue to fight the battle to end predatory lending!