Friday, 9 July 2010

Credit Union and Citizen vs Council

Hackney Credit Union closure is discussed at length in the comment section of this blog post: Hackney Credit Union suspended on Paul Stott's I intend to escape...and come back.

Including such highlights as: "There are rumours of this being precipitated by £100,000 or some such sum going walkies. If there's any truth in that (not saying there is) it's likely to mean people have to wait even longer to get their money back"... and "Who has taken our money from what was in essence an empty charity-shop incredibly licensed to take people's deposits? Who was running this apparent 'ponzi scheme' openly operating on our high street? And who allowed them to prey on investors?"

On Thursday the Hackney Gazette suggested a less extreme scenario saying HCU "collapsed after its running costs outstripped money coming in with more and more people unable to repay loans."

The paper also reported concerns that the HCU collapse would cause a resurgence in loan sharks.

Commentators on I Intend to Escape didn't hold back on council bashing but the top prize for this goes to a guest spot on Hackney Citizen from Jack of Kent: "The improper and disgraceful conduct of Hackney Council" which exposes the council's daft threats against the Citizen as well as its failure to inform the Citizen that it had no intention of pursuing the issue any further.

Jack of Kent picks the council's legal arguments to pieces but could the catalyst for the council's course of action have come from its communications department? In comparison to its well-oiled and fully staffed comms team, the legal department is a Cinderella. (also see Hackney Legal department's recruiting crisis confirmed) and the council's claim that it was defending a junior member of staff looks more like an excuse to bully a critic (one that the Mayor happened to have publicly attacked)... meanwhile the legal team seems to fire wherever it is pointed.

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