Increase the number of options for payday borrowers | Letters
Payday loans literally exist as the only option for the poor for short-term, small-loan financing. This predatory debt trap directly benefits poverty through confusing loan terms and high interest rates, essentially allowing the poor to be monetized.
The solution? Increase the options. Traditional banking companies and the federal government can provide a competitive solution, lowering prices for the borrower and alleviating unnecessary debt pressure on the poor.
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Bank of America, one of these spearheads, already offers small loans with fixed fees, without late fees or overdrafts. Making small dollar loans readily available on such a large scale allows payday borrowers to catch their breath, especially during the uncertainty of the pandemic. Other banks are expected to follow suit.
The federal government may also provide such loans through the Postal Service, especially given the established and easily accessible storefronts in neighborhoods lacking traditional bank branches. The Postal Service should establish banking services and small loans through the cooperation of the federal government, a traditional bank, or both. With more options, payday borrowers can focus on recovery rather than falling into a confusing debt trap.
Udaykiran Vissa, St. Louis
There’s no DeJoy in Mudville to read in your editorial that Postmaster General Louis DeJoy at over $300,000 is the highest paid in history and received a “performance bonus” of $75,000.
I hope whoever made this stupid decision sent him the bonus check.
Illinois Senator Dick Durbin
The fight against violence begins with cooperative civic leadership
Although I agree with Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s response to Ald’s interview with Fran Spielman. George Cardenas that “the root causes of communal violence are deep, complex, and generations are brewing”, I did not find Cardenas’ views on crime or leadership to be “misinformed”.
One theory that I believe, after 38 years of service as a Chicago police officer in numerous posts across the city, is that the crime is co-related to but not caused by the hot weather, the COVID- 19 or broken windows. Moreover, “guns, gangs and drugs” are banal phrases with no lasting solution.
Experienced and informed civic leadership, including academics, civil servants and police executives, is a start. Collectively, they are responsible for police policy, training and morale, and the public safety relationship with the public. The solutions are clear. Implementation is difficult but starts with collective and cooperative civic leadership.
Richard Guerrero, University Village