Keep Up The Pressure On Banks & Retailers

by Bridgwater Senior Citizens Forum
on Friday 05 Aug 2011

type: News Report
topic: Corporations
region: Somerset

KEEP UP THE PRESSURE ON BANKS & RETAILERS

Bridgwater Senior Citizens’ Forum welcomes the news that the Payments Council is no longer seeking to abolish cheques by 2018.

Although we are delighted at this victory for all those who campaigned so hard to show how important cheques are, particularly to older and vulnerable people, the campaign must not stop here.

Banks are still making it difficult for customers to get cheque books and many retailers are refusing to accept cheques.

Pressure need to be maintained on banks, the Payments Council, and retailers to ensure cheques remain fully available. Age UK, which campaigns on older people’s issues is in regular contact with the six biggest banks, as well as continuing ongoing communications with the Payments Council, we will be keeping in regular contact with them to ensure that cheques remain fully available. Individuals can do the same, by threatening to take their custom elsewhere if a bank or retailer refuses to issue or accept cheques

So although we welcome the removal of the target date, there is much more to be done. Bridgwater Senior Citizens’ Forum calls on banks and the payments industry to commit to the following:

  • Cheques must be easily available to people and banks and building societies must continue to send out replacement cheque books automatically.
  • Banks and building societies must also ensure that small traders are not penalised with prohibitive charges for accepting cheques.
  • There must be easy access to cash, through free ATMs and access to all current accounts at the Post Office.
  • All payment systems must be designed ‘inclusively’ to meet the needs of the widest possible range of users.