Independent TD Mattie McGrath has launched a scathing attack on the relentless implementation of aggressive debt recovery policies by the banking sector. Deputy McGrath was speaking as concern continues to grow about the number of suicides related to such practices, but which are largely going unreported:
“It is simply outrageous that many thousands of households remain burdened with trying to engage with what are effectively very hostile debt recovery procedures on the part of the banks.
My office deals on a daily basis with families and individuals who are being financially suffocated by the imposition of completely unrealistic and punitive repayment schedules.
These are not irresponsible people who have no interest in honouring their debt; in the main they are people who are trying to move heaven and earth to resolve their obligations in a manner that allows them to keep a shred of their dignity.
But such goodwill is simply not being recognised by the major lenders.
Instead the lenders and banks have continued to operate in an environment of relative impunity, caused largely by the terrifying unwillingness of this Government to reign them in when they had the chance.
I am personally very concerned about the damage that is being done to the mental and physical health of entire families due to the vicious pursuit of these policies,” concluded Deputy McGrath.