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Our response to MOJ's announcement about curbing unlawful bailiff behaviour

22 July 2019

The Ministry of Justice has today announced certificated bailiffs and High Court Enforcement Officers will be forced to wear body cameras in order to prevent them from using intimidating or threatening tactics to collect debts

Further findings and action on bailiff behaviour will be published later this year.

Responding to the announcement, Richard Lane, Director of External Affairs at StepChange Debt Charity, said:

"While it’s encouraging to see the Government taking steps to curb unlawful bailiff behaviour, today’s announcement does nothing to tackle the deep-rooted problems that exist within the bailiff industry in this country.

"We know from our clients’ experiences that bailiffs’ aggressive pursuit of debts can cause untold anxiety and stress, often pressuring people into making unaffordable repayments.

This system cannot be allowed to continue failing some of the most vulnerable people in our society. The Government must move ensure the bailiff industry is independently regulated as soon as possible, alongside creating a single, free accessible bailiff complaints procedure. These vital measures, as well as a review of bailiff fees and the introduction of affordable bailiff repayment plans, will go some way towards creating the fair and consistent approach people in debt deserve.

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