The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has today set out draft vulnerability guidance to be given to firms. This guidance aims to ensure the fair treatment of the more than 24 million vulnerable people across the country.
Commenting on the announcement, StepChange Debt Charity Head of Policy Peter Tutton says: “The FCA’s timely draft guidance is a welcome step towards ensuring people are not left worse off because products and services don’t take account of their needs or exploit their situation. The guidance reflects our own research, which has consistently revealed how inadequate existing safety nets are for people who experience vulnerability and life shocks. We wholeheartedly agree with the assessment that coronavirus will have increased the number of vulnerable customers – which makes it more vital than ever to ensure that there is a firm focus on their needs.
“Now the challenge is for the Government to consider how to step up support for financially vulnerable households where there is not a regulator like the FCA looking out for fair play. For the most vulnerable in our society currently struggling with rent, council tax or bailiff enforcement, the months ahead are filled with uncertainty – the Government must ensure the safety nets are in place to help them.”