The Scottish Illegal Money Lending Unit (SIMLU) has expanded its network of organisations operating in communities which help residents to report illegal loan shark activity safely.
The new recipient of the Stop Loan Sharks Scotland Charter Mark is Renfrewshire Affordable Credit Alliance (RACA) in recognition of their commitment in supporting and promoting the work of the SIMLU and for taking a zero-tolerance stance on illegal money lending within their communities.
The aim of the SIMLU charter mark is to create a network of organisations actively seeking to uncover and tackle illegal lending and, most importantly, to stop people from ever using loan sharks in the first place.
Fiona Richardson, Chief Officer of Trading Standards Scotland said:
“I am delighted that Renfrewshire Affordable Credit Alliance have signed up to the Stop Loan Sharks Scotland Charter Mark.
“They join a network which currently includes five other organisations actively seeking to uncover and tackle illegal lending.
“We are looking forward to working with RACA in tackling the problem of illegal money lending in Scotland. It is vitally important to our work to create an environment where people feel that they can report illegal lenders without any personal risk to themselves. We need close relationships with frontline agencies in order to do this and hope that our network will help to stop people from ever using loan sharks in the first place.
“If your organisation would be interested in signing up to the Charter Mark or if you would like more information, please get in touch.”
Yvonne Hughes, Affordable Credit Officer at RACA, said:
“Renfrewshire Affordable Credit Alliance is delighted to be awarded the Scottish Illegal Money Lending Unit Charter Mark.
We are an alliance of organisations in Renfrewshire including advice providers and credit unions, supported by Renfrewshire’s third sector interface and Renfrewshire Council to champion fair and honest credit.
We know that everyone will need to borrow at some point, no matter their circumstances, and we are working to ensure that everyone knows their options open to them without resorting to illegal lending.
We recognise the harm caused to communities and individuals by illegal lenders and we will continue to work in partnership with the Scottish Illegal Money Lending Unit on their mission to stop loan sharks.”