MONEY MORAL DILEMMA. Would you take the job?

MSE_Martin MoneySaving Expert Posts: 8,273
Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Combo Breaker
Money Saving Expert
This week's Money Moral Dilemma

Sam is £15,000 in debt and really struggling to make the repayments having been made redundant four months ago. Now at last, there's a job offer, but it's from a doorstep lender. The money is good and would really help, but it depends on selling doorstep debts at very high APRs to lots of vulnerable people. Should (s)he take the job?

Click reply to enter the money moral maze

Please remember, be polite to other MoneySavers, even if you disagree with them
Also read last week's MMD: Pet versus debt

PS. And just to confirm this is an entirely hypothetical situation. Each week in the email I will be asking those questions. And yes, the lack of detail, the phrasing, all of it is deliberate to envoke debate (nice debate too). Enjoy the money moral maze.

Martin Lewis, Money Saving Expert.
Please note, answers don't constitute financial advice, it is based on generalised journalistic research. Always ensure any decision is made with regards to your own individual circumstance.
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  • skylight
    skylight Forumite Posts: 10,716
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Combo Breaker Home Insurance Hacker!
    Of Course! A job is a job at the end of the day (my personal morals are that I would never work for an Arms company)

    Also, the job doesn't have to be forever - and think of the "MSE" good word spreading you can do!
  • kingshir
    kingshir Forumite Posts: 578 Forumite
    Of Course! A job is a job at the end of the day QUOTE

    I have to agree with Charlotte664!
  • Gabriel-Ernest
    Gabriel-Ernest Forumite Posts: 1,496 Forumite
    I wouldn't take it. I've seen what those doorstep merchant scumbags can do to the vulnerable.
    Touch my food ... Feel my fork!
  • JohnInDebt
    JohnInDebt Forumite Posts: 893 Forumite
    Yes, otherwise someone else will take it.

    It shouldn't be up to her to protect the vulnerable members of society by not taking a job that someone else (and maybe more aggresive) will take.
    Disclaimer: Any spelling mistakes or incorrect grammar is purely coincidental and in no way reflects the intelligence of the author.

  • hollydays
    hollydays Forumite Posts: 19,812
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Name Dropper
    The job involves exploitation.Couldnt do it,them being vulnerable or not,is not the issue.If he was finding it so hard to get any other job,but got offered this one,he would have to ask himself why? Jobs that offer very good pay (commission?) arent always what they are cracked up to be. If anyone saw the tv programme about bailiffs,look at how they acted to make their commission.
  • Rafter
    Rafter Forumite Posts: 3,850
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Combo Breaker
    Will she be breaking the law? Will the contracts and credit agreements she is getting customers to sign up to be illegal?

    Unlikely if it is a bona fide organisation.

    The fact is if you are on a low income and need £200 to buy a new washing machine for example, the high street banks wont be interested.

    Sure the APR will be high but so are the costs of doorstep collection of the minimum payments.

    Not a job I would want to do, but now would I want to sell cigaretes, work for an arms or gambling organisation.

    In an ideal world, doorstep lending would be banned and there would be a network of credit unions to help those ignored by mainstream financial services companies.

    Smile :), it makes people wonder what you have been up to.
  • bateleur
    bateleur Forumite Posts: 5 Forumite
    I feel it's fine for Sam to take the job. There are various ways to stop these kinds of loans being a problem for people, but trying to starve the companies involved of sales staff really isn't one of them !

    Personally I'd like to see more government regulation for loans, but even for people who disapprove of that for political reasons there's always the option of educating the potential loan customers about the risks. (Like introducing them to this site, for example !)
  • Sumostar
    Sumostar Forumite Posts: 131 Forumite
    I was in a similar situation some years ago. My Civil Service pay was not enough to live on and the credit card debts were mounting, so I got a job as a debt collector! Don't you love the irony of that?

    Some of the debtors were really struggling, and for those you would inform the lender that there was no hope of recovery and that they should write the debt off; but some had a better lifestyle than me and just didn't want to pay for the hundreds of pounds of nice new stuff that they had ordered from the catalogues! When they were faced with the prospect of a CCJ thet soon changed their mind.
  • lightchaser
    lightchaser Forumite Posts: 2 Newbie
    There is a issue about "should we enjoy our work" here, would sam be comfortable selling a product that will get more people into a situation s/he is facing. I guess it is legal, as the Government does not seem to be doing a lot to tackle huge interest charges - guess it helps the money go round, via them!

    I believe that if you are selling a product you need to be pleasant, open, and at least appear to enjoy work - how many time do we just wish that shop assistants would greet with a smile and chatter?

    Coming from Coaching background, it is clear that so many people are locked into situations that they neither can give their best or benefit greatly. Fulfilling dreams is not pie in the sky, it is an actual challenge to test determination and passion.

    If Sam can see beyond this job to the next target - i.e. I will do this to clear significant debt, but my goal is to be employed elsewhere within six months, then that would be the only option - what do they say - no pain, no gain - but ONLY if s/he can focus on the next stage and therefore be relatively happy in the work knowing clear goals.

    I would not work in an arms factory either, nor sell drugs or traffic people, but in certain countries what other choice is there for many people to feed their families.

    Thankfully we have choice in UK - a lot of it! Sam (mythical I know) decide what you want to really do, and go for it!
  • dunamis
    dunamis Forumite Posts: 29
    Part of the Furniture 10 Posts
    Sorry - I don't think the issue is about job's about whether you actively engage in something you believe is morally wrong. Does Sam believe that selling these products is exploitative? Is Sam willing to abandon her/his moral standards to make some money?

    Maybe Sam needs to talk to the lender about agreeing a more manageable repayment plan, get a job in line with his/her moral standards and continue to look for something that pays better? Nobody said that maintaining a moral position is easy :)

    The whole 'just take the job for a little while' is a bit of a doesn't really make it any more morally acceptable to do it for six months rather than six's still compromising the moral position (assuming that Sam's moral position is at odds with the job which we're not really told).

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