Good Shepherd works at the coalface of women’s economic insecurity. Our financial programs – including Financial Counselling, Financial Capability and No Interest Loans (NILs) services – play a significant role in supporting the financial wellbeing of women and families. For some time now our practitioners have been concerned about the growth and harms of BNPL.
This report explores the use of BNPL among our clients, the impacts we are seeing from its use, and the role of BNPL in exploiting financial insecurity.
We make recommendations that tackle both the causes and harms of BNPL use, including:
• Establishing a minimum income floor by increasing income support base rates (including JobSeeker) to at least the Age Pension level.
• Strengthening debt-free financial support for family violence victim-survivors, by increasing the amount and accessibility of the Federal Escaping Violence Payment.
• Maximising alternatives to BNPL, by supporting the promotion and delivery of No Interest Loans, and ensuring people have a regulated right to instalment payments for essential services.
• Closing regulatory loopholes to ensure consistent consumer protection, with a focus on preventing unaffordable BNPL debts, unmanageable multiple accounts, and misleading marketing of BNPL.
• Prioritising financial abuse prevention in the BNPL regulatory regime.
Download the report summary
Download the full report
November 3 2023