Welby targets primary schools as he wages war on pay day loan firms

The Archbishop of Canterbury
The Archbishop of Canterbury
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Children as young as four will be encouraged to join new Church of England savings clubs as part of a bid to prevent them relying on payday lenders or racking up heavy debts later in life.

The Church is proposing a network of clubs in primary schools run by credit unions which will help teach youngsters to take a responsible approach to money from an early age.

It is the latest salvo in the Archbishop of Canterbury’s declared mission to put payday lenders out of business.

Under the plans, children would be able to save small, regular amounts of money, and would also be given the chance to take part in running the groups, such as working as junior cashiers or bank managers.

Parents and school staff could also sign up to the clubs, with mothers and fathers able to set up dedicated accounts to save for particular expenses such as trips and school uniform.

The proposals - which would be piloted in Church of England primary schools in three areas to begin with - have been drawn up by the Archbishop of Canterbury’s new Task Group on Responsible Credit and Savings.

The task group was launched at the beginning of the year in the wake of comments by the Most Rev Justin Welby that he wanted to drive payday lenders out of business through the creation of credit unions.

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