Working Towards a Better Tomorrow
Beat the Bailiffs and the Banks was created in August 2013, after some friends and I attended the first attempted eviction of a family in Oldham. After a 4 hour standoff the Bailiffs went to their next job in Hollingworth, a 5 minute drive away.
Later on that afternoon we made a call to the Bailiffs to ensure they wouldn't be returning. We were informed that the man at the next property they visited had hung himself in his porch as he saw the bailiffs coming up his path. This poor soul died 5 days later in intensive care. This tragic event shocked us all and it gave me the wake up call needed to create Beat the Bailiffs and the Banks.
I wanted to create a place where people could come together and learn from each other's experiences without being judged. Just speaking about your problems can be the hardest step due to the shame associated with debt. This is compounded when people have mental health issues which can isolate them further and have a detrimental effect on their wellbeing.
The remit quickly widened to include all types of debt e.g. TVL, Council Tax, Parking tickets, Tax credit overpayments, rent arrears, HMRC, utilities etc. The group expanded quickly, 4500 members in less than 10 months but it was just the tip of the iceberg. We now have over 100,000 members in our Facebook group and should reach 150,000 before we are 6 years old.
I wanted people to feel empowered enough to act and get 'Boots on the Ground' to stave off evictions until a resolution could be found. I also wanted to expose the fraud and double standards within the financial industry and the evolution of slavery through economic hardship leading to modern day debt slavery.
The idea was and still is to create communities, little pockets of resistance who help spread the word and raise awareness. A community based network of McKenzie Friends, Litigants in Person (LiPs) and Lay Advisors is in the process of being created, a suitable and sufficient training programme will take place to cover the areas required . Also Scribes are needed who can write down or type what happens in court. If you are interested please email; and tell us who you are, a verifiable link to your profile and why you want to get involved. If this isn't for you then maybe you might be interested in becoming a member of BTBATB. There are also a number of splinter groups all over the country helping people defend themselves and others from the apparatus of the debt collection industry and consequences of ideological austerity.
Thank you to the Admin Team (past and present), Trusted Members, and Members alike for all your efforts in helping to make Beat the Bailiffs and the Banks the success it is today. I know can be difficult and stressful at times but remember ALL storms pass, don't let the bastards grind you down.