DEBT or CREDIT?
Taxing or Borrowing?
Debt on Our Doorstep
Early Day Motions for Economic Democracy?
Austin Mitchell MP has been a long standing campaigner for a monetary policy that helps people rather than banks.
On June 26th
2002 he tabled Early Day Motion 1515 entitled Using the Public Credit which
was signed by 24 MPs.
Tonight we will be joined by Niall
Cooper, the National Coordinator of the Church Action on Poverty programme
in Manchester http://www.church-poverty.org.uk/
who raises awareness amongst MPs with EDM 257 entitled Low Income Debtors and
Poverty and tabled by John Battle MP and signed by 114 MPs. It is the
‘other side’ of EDM 1515 and says: That this House notes
the extent of debt amongst those on a low income with over
three million people entering into debt on their doorstep through extortionate
tackling debt and financial exclusion must be given priority in the Government's
and calls for coordination of the current fragmentary
approach setting departmental policies and actions within complementary
strategies to tackle financial exclusion and eradicate poverty,
focusing on reforming the Social Fund, tackling
extortionate lending and promoting affordable credit through credit unions.
We will hear about Debt on our Doorstep
an alliance of activists and organisations who have come
together to relieve the burden of debt, and
to promote solutions to financial exclusion. Among the campaigning areas are:
to promote credit unions
and other community finance initiatives
to promote socially
responsible service provision by high street banks
to campaign for methods
of debt recovery to become more equitable, just and effective by ensuring that
adequate protection is available to people unable to repay their debts.
Meanwhile, Titus Alexander has reworded EDM
1515 as basis for a new concerted effort among members of the Forum for
this House, concerned at the rising burden of private debt, public borrowing and
public-private finance initiatives;
notes that the
proportion of debt-free money in circulation has fallen from 20% of the money
stock in 1964 to 3% today;
increasing the proportion of debt-free money may provide a viable alternative to
both public borrowing and the Private Finance Initiative;
further notes that
the government could issue interest-free money, repayable over twenty five
years, thereby both cutting the cost of such public investment by at least one
half of what it would otherwise be while acting in a non-inflationary way;
and therefore urges
the Treasury to commission independent reviews on procedures for increasing the
proportion of debt free money in the economy and on the benefits of so doing and
report them to this House."