Unions are calling on banks and home lenders to change the way they deal with families struggling to pay their mortgages, after reports of homeowners returning from work to find their locks had been changed.
ACTU President Sharan Burrow said;
“It is simply not acceptable for banks that are making enormous profits to repossess homes when homeowners are only a few weeks behind in the repayments.
“We need to be sure that banks are acting appropriately and exhausting all avenues before they decide to foreclose on a person’s home.
“The banks and other lenders should look carefully at other options such as longer and more flexible payment plans rather than simply foreclose and change the locks.
“With up to 300,000 working families across the country in severe mortgage stress and fighting to hold onto their homes – we expect banks will look at everything that can be done.
“We need to remember that the economic downturn in the United States grew out of a crisis caused by large numbers of working families being unable to pay their mortgages.
“Large scale foreclosures in Australia would not only be very bad for working families it would also be bad for banks, their shareholders and the economy as a whole.
“What we need and what the community demands is that the banks act responsibly and show some concern for people struggling because of higher interest rates.
“Unions are calling on banks to start looking at how they can help people keep their homes rather than push them onto the streets over a few thousand dollars”, said Ms Burrow.