Fergus Ewing MSP opens StepChange Debt Charity Scotland office in Glasgow
5 March, 2013
Fergus Ewing MSP, Minister for Energy, Enterprise and Tourism, today opened the new office of StepChange Debt Charity Scotland in Glasgow.
StepChange Debt Charity Scotland is an independent charity dedicated to overcoming problem debt. It is Scotland’s largest provider of specialist telephone and online debt advice, offering individual solutions that are effective and free.
The charity has appointed a new head in Scotland to help raise awareness of the issues surrounding debt. It has doubled its team of debt advisors (to 14) and in January advised 1,131 Scots, almost 300 more than the same month last year.
Across the UK StepChange helps over 350,000 people a year, with more than two million helped since it was created 20 years ago. In 2012 it managed over £3.8 billion worth of debt and helped clients repay almost £327 million to creditors, local authorities and government.
Fergus Ewing was hosted in Glasgow by the charity’s chairman, Lord Stevenson of Balmacara, and was welcomed by a range of partner organisations.
Fergus Ewing MSP said: “I am very pleased that StepChange Debt Charity is expanding its operation in Scotland.
“They have an outstanding track record in their field and this move will provide a boost in delivering high quality financial advice free of charge to the increasing numbers of people in severe financial difficulty.”
Lord Stevenson of Balmacara, Chair of StepChange Debt Charity Scotland, said: “The Scottish Government has an ambitious strategy for dealing with the growth of problem debt.
“Its proposals for reforming bankruptcy legislation later this year will help Scotland become a world leader in terms of insolvency legislation and money advice.
“StepChange Debt Charity Scotland is pleased that it too is ready to do more. We have a new office in Glasgow with twice as many advisors, ready to help more Scots with free advice”.
Lord Stevenson also announced that StepChange Debt Charity Scotland has created a specialist team in Glasgow to provide the Debt Arrangement Scheme. This will enable clients to apply for a debt payment programme under DAS free of charge and give them additional protection from creditors whilst paying their debts.