15 Sep 2017 | Posted In Bob's Blog (MALG updates)

It hardly seems any time since our last National Members Meeting & AGM where the Money Advice Service launched its new toolkit for creditors on how they can collaborate with debt advice agencies, Yvonne Fovargue MP kindly gave us an update on her campaigning work as a member of the APPG on Debt, and Jane Tully of Money Advice Trust and Katie Evans of Money & Mental Health Policy Institute ran two fascinating and incredibly interactive sessions the outputs of which are now being used to shape policy around bailiff reform and point of sale credit.

I hope that the upcoming MALG National Members Meeting on Tuesday 26 September 10.30am-3pm, which will include sessions run by the Fairbanking Foundation, Payplan, and Nationwide Building Society, will be as well attended, as interactive, and as valuable as the last one was. Thanks to Maclay Murray & Spens LLP for hosting at their offices at 1 London Wall, EC2Y 5AB.

If you haven’t already registered to attend, please email dionne.stocking@malg.org.uk as soon as possible.

UK Credit & Collections Conference

I had a great day at the London Hilton Wembley yesterday for the Credit Services Association’s UK Credit & Collections Conference (UKCCC). Topics including the impending General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), the future of the motor finance market, and using fintech for good. One of the most interesting sessions from my point of view was about local government collections. Michael Hainge of Hammersmith & Fulham Council talked about their joint venture with 1st Credit which is enabling them to implement an ethical debt collection model across their Council and sell on this model to other local authorities who have a history of bad practice including over-use of bailiffs The most interesting part was the stats around what poor collections practices actually costs local authorities in terms of the impact on residents – which the local authority then has the duty to fix! From mental health to housing, it was a real lesson in how counter-productive working in silos can be – a great lesson for the money advice sector.

I hope to see some local authorities at the MALG Conference in November and I will be attending the Local Authority Civil Enforcement Forum (LACEF) Conference later this month as part of our efforts to engage more effectively with the sector.

Major review of debt advice funding in the UK launches call for evidence

A major Independent Review of the Funding of Debt Advice, led by Peter Wyman, reached a key milestone this week with the launch of a ‘Call for Evidence’.

The Review, set up in response to a challenging and complex debt advice funding landscape will make recommendations for an appropriate funding framework for the future, and look at issues that affect some of the most financially vulnerable people in society.

The review was initiated by the Debt Advice Steering Group (an independent cross-sector group including the Money Advice Service, Advice UK, Barclays, UK Finance, Money Advice Trust, RBS, Finance and Leasing Association, Citizens Advice and StepChange), and will report back mid-2018. Interested parties can contribute to the Review via email debtadvicefunding@moneyadviceservice.org.uk before midnight on 8 December 2017.

Conference sponsors

Thank you to MALG Conference 2017 sponsors and exhibitors who are making this must-attend event possible. We only have a couple of sponsorship and exhibition packages available so please contact me if you are interested.

And don’t forget to book your place at the MALG Conference online now!