Stop the Debt Trap: Pass AB539

[inaudible] Ready problem — Not so. Which is — Uhhuh. And in the back or something like [inaudible] To now. All right thank you very much. For everybody for coming and we’re going to go ahead and get started all right I’m going to hand it over to you — The one of the faith leaders who has been on the tour with us since the beginning Muhammad — We started in San Diego — We have not been home since Monday is very exhausting and he’s come with us the San Diego LA — Modesto we have another face leader who will be speaking later as well who’s been on this tour with us so — I’m going to hand it over to you and then we’ll begin thank you. I give everyone the readings of peace a salon only come. My name is Muhammad Khan — Been on this — Tour with faith leaders across the state — I represent American moves and strategies also recently putting put together a coalition of Muslim. And Jewish leaders to end poverty — As we travel from San Diego. Los Angeles Bakersfield Modesto and finally here in Sacramento. We were energizing. Of the various [inaudible] Faith communities. What? To do what they’ve been always doing. But with the support of this great assembly and you’ll hear from the authors. Of this — Legislation. God doesn’t want people to suffer. God wants people to be happy. And food clothing and shelter. Is a human right but also divine right. And this bill. Is divine intervention. Because when someone is poor. The average American average Californian. Is maybe two three four paychecks away from poverty. In one stay slip. Maybe because of dignity and pride. They don’t let others know. And so they go into this trap. That supposedly is a role. To help them get out of debt. But they get this rope. In the moment they think they’re up there actually with the the way that the credit is structured. You start out with the twenty five hundred plus dollar loan you end up with. Ten plus. Thousand it just compounds the suffering. Compounds the mental issues of depression. The cycle of poverty just [inaudible] Increases so as a face leader and amongst the faith leaders who traveled we also met. The broken lives along the way. The people who would direct victims of predatory lending. It has all of us face leaders United different paths different religions all. The blood far Thor of different faiths. We United around this issue because we know it’s divine intervention. To put a cap. On predatory loaning. And I thank god. That god inspired these legislature’s behind us — For doing. The the most to me one of the most noble of things. Because of we if AB five thirty nine gets passed. It’s really going to end poverty it’s going to end the cycle of homelessness. And it’s gonna brightened people’s lives up. So — So I’d like to introduce. The speaker. Of Sarandon. And you know he’s the I don’t know the nuances of the capital because I’m not here. But when you have the speaker. As one of the major capital catalyst. Behind this issue. I just have to thank him. On the behalf of all the faith leaders. In more important the speaker on the behalf of the poor in the most vulnerable because from their point of view. Your answer to their prayers so thank you speaker. Okay thank you and good morning I I’m I’m not sure I understand the nuances the capital either – Aye ayes spent about twenty years — Working in social services mostly — Early childhood education. And what we saw with the families who who we provided services to those families abroad that were below the poverty line those families that were the most vulnerable. We side incredible cycle of debt an incredible cycle of that that devolved either from car title loans are from high interest loans such as the the loans addressed — Through this bill. And for me this is really just an extension of all of the work I did in the nonprofit sector for twenty years the city an extension. Of our efforts here in California and efforts of of groups like yours in the fifth at the faith based organization. To help to make sure that we address poverty we have had a lot of allies in this fight we’ve had a lot of our allies obviously with. So many of the NGOs who I see here we’ve had incredible incredible outpouring — From the faith based community you’re going to hear from some of our members today we’re gonna talk about that about this piece of legislation and the impact of this laws that this piece of legislation. But when you when you hear them think about the extent to which each of them represents about half a million Californians and think about the extent to which people in their district. And people in this giant state will be impacted positively impacted by this legislation I am incredibly proud of this body incredibly bright proud of the assembly. Incredibly proud to be here with you with all of you leaders from throughout California one of the people whose efforts in this fight have been just nonstop. Since since last year is our banking chair from Santa Barbara Monique Limon Monique is the author of this piece of legislation she’s fighting tirelessly. For all have you and she’s gonna make sure we get this over the finish line please welcome assembly member Monique Limon. Thank you gas yes but is that a key I I want to think that not only — Everyone who is here supporting us today — But in particular the faith based groups what we have learned with this piece of legislation as that there is no political designation. For doing what is right we have multiple faiths represented here today as we have support from leaders from both sides of the aisle as we have support from people from throughout the state of California. This speaks to the fact that this piece of legislation AB five three nine is really about tackling one of the hardest issues that the state is trying to tackle which is how we help. Those who are in need. Who are looking at financial services and products as a way to get out of poverty this bill does not solve all of our issues and it certainly does not take? Every single individual out of poverty but it does send a message. For every single Californian in the state that we will not substitute the hard answers to the hard questions about how we get out of poverty with bad financial products. Bad financial products do not supplement the need for this legislature for this body to keep doing right for the neediest and poorest individuals in our state. We know that over the last decade there have been multiple attempts to try to rein in. Predatory lenders the idea that people. Go out in a time of need. And find a product that is going to get them into greater debt and create a debt cycle for them is not the answer. AB five thirty nine establishes a rate cap of 36% for loans between twenty five hundred dollars and ten thousand dollar. Now it’s not a perfect solution but it is something that we have found we have been able to create a broad broad broad coalition around. I am thankful. That we have so many assembly members — Working with as we have other legislators were engaged in deep conversations about what it means to rainy rain in a product work twenty thousand Californians lose their car. I needed mode of transportation to get from work [inaudible] To school. To see a medical provider. Because of this product they lose their car. One in three individuals who take out this product. Go into debt and default. And just as a point of comparison. For credit cards that rate is 4%. So there is something we need to do here in the state and I am incredibly grateful that we are taking a stab at it yet again. This effort has existed over decades — And we’re coming back strong this year and we will work to get this to the finish line we will absolutely work and some of the individuals who are part of this art or joint authors and co authors of this and I’m going to introduce them to you. Because they also play a role and their involvement. Also signifies and signals. To the state that we are invested in this no matter what part of the state we live in no matter if we’re in land if for on the coasts if we have. A big cities are little cities we understand that this is an issue for Californians throughout so I want to introduce to you — One of the joint authors it’s been working very hard with me and this entire year assembly member Tim Grayson. Thank you all for coming out this morning in support of this much needed effort. And I would like to especially thank a speaker Rendon — And also my friend Monique Limon the chair of assembly banking committee. I’m proud to stand here this morning with faith leaders of all denominations speaking out. Against credit — Predation and economic servitude. Proverbs fourteen thirty one says whoever — Presses the poor shows contempt for their maker but whoever is kind to the needy honors god. This is why we’re here today to ensure that people of California have credit options that are fair. The responsible and that build a bridge out of poverty. As we speak thousands of our neighbors our friends and family are taking out loans that they will never be able to pay back. These products are designed to fail loans that can be as high as two hundred or 3100% interes. Stopping the sale of these loans is a moral spiritual social and economic imperative however. I am happy to say that even though we witnessed divisions today this issue is not a partisan issue. Democrats and Republicans across the state from ruled urban communities have joined to say loudly that we must protect our most vulnerable and underserved from predatory products that do nothing to cut off the shackles of economic servitude. We acknowledge that people short on cash need access to resources that provide temporary relief to pay rent medical bills. And life’s necessities but this does not mean we should allow unscrupulous lenders to line their pockets at the expense of exploited communities. And I believe that AB five thirty nine strikes the right balance between access. And responsibility it’s past time the we had rest these products these types of product. That are hurt consumers far beyond helping them to bring them out of poverty those who find themselves in financial crisis should not have their crisis compounded that is both literally and figuratively. By facing the repayment demand of up to four times the amount that is borrowed simply because they do not or are not a part of the flu and community. Again thank you for your work and your support of AB five thirty nine and all that we are doing here today to restore kindness. To the needy of our communities another very impactful partner in this effor. Is — A friend of mine as well assembly member and also chair of the California Latino caucus assembly member Loretta Gonzale. I represent — The southernmost district in the state along the border and up to a community called city heights a committee where I live. And it’s community rich in immigrants and refugees. And poor in banks basically. But along the major streets and city heights on every single block you see these lenders on every block you can’t get away from the fact that that is the only capital available. To my under banked and unbanked community. And over the last few weeks we’ve been holding a lot of hearings and and get a lot of information from our constituents. So that we can carry that on and explain to people how. Just how predatory these folks are. Stories about people going in for a needed eight hundred dollar loan but being pushed to twenty five hundred dollars which is the unregulated space. Signing papers that were. Multiple pages in length. And not in their native language and then bringing it home and realizing they signed up for a 6100% loan 6100%. There’s nothing illegal about that right now. 600- percent think about that. They don’t even need a loan for twenty five hundred dollars they needed it. For eight hundred they were trying to pay back the the the access immediately these are the stories were hearing. It is truly predatory. That the companies know that if they can push you to just take a little bit more that they get out of that 36% regulated space and get you into a loan that you’ll never be able to pay off. And they don’t care. They don’t care that it ruins your credit store score it puts you in a cycle of debt that your pain on that twenty five hundred dollars. To twenty thousand dollars back they don’t care they get their money. They get access of that money and they keep leaving you in debt it’s time we have to stop this it’s a moral. And a lot of folks in the last few weeks saying 36% seems kind of high. It does. It’s exceptionally reasonable what we’re asking for here I think I think my colleague Mister Grayson called it a balance of of capital. And and I interest caps. But this is a start in this is where we have to start in it’s a moral imperative. So for a community that relies too heavily and knows a we have to rely too heavily. On all of these types of products. I’d say that it is time to stop that I know it’s time to stop in San Diego all the way up. To my next colleague to San Jose. I have to say my bring up us Kalra who we give him credit last year when he brought the bill forward we had a hard time getting people on board. But we knew he was setting it up for this year’s bill so with that I bring up another joint author Ofshe Kalra. Well it’s it’s really amazing to be here today you know a few years ago — When I was on the sound a city council — We were really we work really hard to me passed some of the strong there’s a local ordinances that exists of any city in the natio. But I remember when we did that- Folks are saying us you know this is great and all. But the real works not going to be done in city hall the real work needs to be done in Sacramento. That’s are you can actually have the change that is going to affect interest rates is actually gonna get rid of these predatory lenders. And those that are really in trapping people that. They claim to be throwing out a a lifeline a life preserver there really throwing out an anchor that’s really waiting people down. And getting them into endless drowning debt. And to be here today I I just want to say. That the leadership that’s behind me — Is extraordinary to come to Sacramento and know that you have people that are compassionate that want to do the right thing the matter how hard it is. Is such an incredible feeling and we know that what we’re doing. Today what we’re doing this session because I’m confident we’re going to get this done — It is where joining states like Florida Georgia Kansas Kentucky Oklahoma. What where we had not been leading as a state? But under the leadership of this speaker chair low moan and our other colleagues that are joining together. We will lead I will make sure that we move California for because we know that these lenders for over three decades now have been targeting our communities — We’ve seen traditional banking leave. Working class communities we’ve seen these predatory lenders con men. And very specifically target our communities. That’s why you hear these commercials over and over again on hip hop radio stations on Spanish language and other ethnic media. It’s very clear who they’re targeting. And it’s very clear who we need to protect. And so I just feel very lucky today I feel very blessed I want to thank. Most of all those that have been despite for many many years before any of us got here. There are the people that are working on this for many years and I’m grateful that were able to be here to join you — Very great for the faith leaders but most most of all I really want to thank. Of our speaker Anthony Rendon — Who is prioritize this and and made this an important priority for all of us in this building? And to be able to do this with our chair of banking Monique Limon I had to partnering with Tim Grayson us from two very different parts of the state. They face the same issue because we see this issue in every part of the state assembly member Gonzalez said from the southern most to the northernmost. And so with all of you in front of us with everyone behind us I am so confident that we’re gonna finally get rid of these lenders that are targeting Californians every day. And as a Charlie mon indicated – This is part of our work but it’s a really really really important part of the work. And that’s why it’s taken so many years for us to even get here. And there is still a long way to go but because of the coalition that we have here. I’m more confident than ever that we’re gonna see this through and then after we see this through we’re gonna continue to see what we need to do to help looked up all Californians thank you. Hello okay of so I want to thank the members who are here and they’re on a tight schedule so I know you guys have to go — But thank you very much for coming we’re going to continue with the press conference because we have our fit many other faith leaders labor leaders veterans groups who are going to speak but but thank you very much for your for your words and for your leadership on this issue. Are you Reverend

One comment on “Stop the Debt Trap: Pass AB539”

  1. puuxexil says:

    Personally, I would like to see High Schools teach students how to manage money… I think that would benefit everybody.

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