By Democrat reporter
Scottish Labour deputy leader Jackie Baillie, pictured right, has called for action to protect Scots in debt, as statistics have revealed that thousands have benefited from Scottish Labour amendments to legislation to provide breathing space for those in debt.
Statistics have shown that as of the 30th November, 1,027 applications for debt moratoria had been granted under new powers.
In addition, for the period between 27 May and 31 October 2020, there were 1,244 new applications for bankruptcy which benefited from the reduced application fee – 984 (79.1 per cent) of which paid no application fee at all.
Jackie successfully argued for additional fees to be waived for people in debt during the pandemic.
With the Institute for Public Policy Research reporting that one in four people in Scotland – 1.1 million people – state that they could only cope for a month or less if they lost their main source of income, Scottish Labour is calling for the amendments to legislation to be maintained until at least September next year – affording vital breathing space for those in debt.
Scottish Labour deputy leader and finance spokesperson Jackie Baillie said: “With thousands of Scots suffering a year of financial hardship like never before, it is a source of pride that labour amendments have provided breathing space to thousands.
“The vaccine may be starting to reach people, but the financial implications of the pandemic are set to ravage Scotland’s economy and household finances for some time to come.
“Scottish Labour is today calling on the SNP government to commit to extending the support in the legislation until at least September – we cannot have thousands of Scots being overwhelmed by debt as a result of the pandemic without providing additional support.
“We must ensure that those who require financial help get all the help they need in this turbulent and difficult time.”