Our Policy Views
As the UK’s leading financial capability charity, we have a set of clear principles and beliefs that frame all of the work we do. Our views, outlined below, help us to develop policy to inform Government decisions related to the six key areas that we focus on.
To give you a better idea of what the charity truly believes in, we have established a set of high-level policy lines.
- We believe that:
- everyone has the capability to be on top of their money as a part of everyday life.
- being on top of your money means you are more in control of your life, your finances and your debts, reducing stress and hardship.
- being on top of your money increases your wellbeing and helps you achieve your goals and live a happier, more positive life as a result.
- Financial capability is therefore an essential life skill.
- Financially capable people are on top of, and make the most of, their money, in these 5 key areas:
- Planning (including budgeting)
- Financial services products
- Everyday money (including wages, cash, bank accounts)
- Helping young people to become financially capable should start as early as possible, in the home and as part of the school curriculum.
- But it doesn’t stop there – the need continues throughout life into retirement.
- Financial capability products and services should be engaging and tailored to their audiences. Generic financial advice should be available and free to all, and this needs to be supported by specific initiatives aimed at particular life stages or ‘teachable moments’.
- Everyone can benefit from improving their financial capability, no matter what their situation.
Tax and Benefits
- The tax and benefits system needs to be clear, so people know how it affects them.
- Any changes should take into account the impact they might have on financial capability.
- Any system of student finance should promote a healthy attitude to debt.
- The delivery of student finance should make good money management as easy as possible.
Credit and Debt
- You should only be able to take out credit you can afford to repay.
- If you use any sort of credit, it should be clearly explained how much you’ll repay, when you’ll repay, and what happens if you can’t.
- If you get into difficulty you should be helped to get back on top of your money.
- Financial regulation needs to focus on consumer welfare.
- Regulation should prevent harm, not just react to it.
- This includes making sure people are only able to borrow what they can afford.
- And that they’re treated fairly if they get into difficulty.
- Everyone should have access to basic financial products necessary for participation in modern life.
- But they shouldn’t be penalised for how they are able to pay or receive information.
- Government should support financial inclusion, but also help those people who remain excluded by circumstance.