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Policy and Government

At CAP we don’t want to just treat the symptoms of poverty; we also want to address the causes. That’s why we’re working tirelessly behind the scenes to shape and influence the policies that affect our clients. It means we get to speak on behalf of the vulnerable to the people with the power to change their lives. And our voice is growing louder.

Industry professionals seek our opinion on current issues, and our recommendations get heard in Parliament. Change is happening. Below are some of the ways in which we are fighting for justice amongst the country’s key decision-makers.

CAP joins other charities in wanting to see roll out of Universal Credit suspended

calendar20 September 2017

We are standing alongside other charities in the call to halt the roll out of Universal Credit. Citizens Advice's report Universal Credit and Debt and StepChange Debt Charity's briefing titled Third Party Deductions highlight the pressing issues with the benefit system, which leaves people without money to buy food or pay their rent. Whilst we support both the principle of Universal Credit and easy debt repayments, it is paramount that people do not face hardship as a result.

CAP’s response to Ofgem’s default tariffs consultation

calendar15 September 2017

CAP has responded to Ofgem's latest consultation about default tariffs customers are rolled onto when they come to the end of a fixed-term contract and do not make an active choice. We welcomed the intended outcomes of this proposal - to reduce the number of customers on more expensive Standards Variable Tariffs (SVT). We were happy to see the proposal permitting suppliers to roll customers onto another fixed-term deal, as well as the criteria set to ensure the tariff is suitable. We believe, however, that the Relevant Fixed Term Default Tariff should be cheaper than the alternative SVT, to address risks of uncertainty. Read the rest of our response below.

Read the full document here

MAS consultation: ‘A strategic approach to debt advice commissioning 2018-2023’

calendar30 August 2017

We have responded to the Money Advice Service's (MAS) latest consultation, 'A strategic approach to debt advice commissioning 2018-2023'. The consultation invited comments on MAS's commissioning intentions for the provision of MAS-funded debt advice from 2018 to 2023. CAP were in support of MAS's focus on financial capability, client outcomes and taking a joined-up approach, yet were hesitant about the feasibility of integrating them across the debt advice sector. We also emphasised the value of Fairshare in providing a stable income for organisation such as CAP, who are not commissioned by MAS. Click below to read our full response.

Read the full document here

Ofgem consultation ‘Prepayment meters installed under warrant - statutory consultation’

calendar29 August 2017

The latest Ofgem consultation provided revised proposals and draft licence conditions covering prepayment meter (PPM) installation under warrant. We have responded to welcome the protection this will bring to those in financial difficulty and vulnerable situations. In particular we were happy to see the prohibition on force fitting a PPM where the installation process would be ‘severely traumatic’. The cap of warrant-related costs to £150 to provide incentives for suppliers to pursue a warrant as a last resort was also welcomed, as well as preventing warrant-related costs exacerbating financial difficulty. Targeting will be key to ensure this is effective in practice, and we also believe that there is space for more safeguards to be put in place for customers with a smart meter, where switching to PPM can be done remotely. Read the rest of our response below.

Read the full document here

Increasing flexibility in the Scottish Debt Arrangement Scheme (DAS)

calendar18 August 2017

Accountant in Bankruptcy (AiB), who oversees the Scottish Debt Arrangement Scheme (DAS), are considering three options to increase flexibility by changing how the Common Financial Tool (CFT) is used to calculate contributions in a Debt Payment Plan (DPP). Flexibility is hugely beneficial, but there are concerns about the sustainability of plans being impacted. We have responded to highlight flexibility increases sustainability, but that this should be done where circumstances necessitate it rather than lengthening plans as a matter of course. To read our full response click below.

Read the full document here
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Other and previous reports:

Setting the pace Client report 2015 Client report 2014 Client report 2013

Introducing CAP's External Affairs team

Meet the team representing CAP and building relationships in the credit and debt advice industries, as well as the third sector and with the Government:

Dawn Stobart
Director of External Affairs

Helen Webb
External Affairs Manager

Rachel Gregory
External Affairs Analyst

Daniel Kelly
Creditor Relations Analyst

Kiri Saunders
External Affairs team

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