UWCT Hosting Screenings of Local Payday Lending Documentary, The Ordinance


Temple, Texas – August 10, 2016 – United Way of Central Texas (UWCT) is facilitating screenings of The Ordinance by Deidox Films. Through the UWCT, The Ordinance screening kit is available for local nonprofits, churches, community organizations, universities, or public libraries for viewing, at no cost.

The Ordinance film, has been released nationwide, and follows residents in Temple, Texas, as they learn about options for local regulation of the payday lending industry; and ultimately, how the City Council votes on the issue. The film endeavors to show how difficult it is for city councils in conservative towns to decide whether they should regulate businesses. Similarly, non-profit leaders, pastors, and priests wrestle with whether their voice is worth raising or if the risk is too great. And every day, vulnerable citizens turn to payday lenders thinking they’ll get help.

Over the last several years, our country has seen explosive growth from an often overlooked business, payday lenders. Often charging over 500% interest, there are currently over 15 million people trapped in payday loans in the United States. By exploiting legal loopholes or changing long established usury laws, these payday and auto title businesses are preying upon the vulnerable by locking them into endless cycles of debt. In turn, nonprofits, faith communities, and charities have been asked to step in and help the vulnerable.

The state and national government have been slow to respond. Out of desperation, cities
across Texas are adopting local laws, to close the loopholes and reestablish
responsible lending practices.

On the national level, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has been given the task of passing federal regulations on payday lenders. But the payday lending industry is fighting back, spending millions on lobbyists and doing everything in their power to stop reform. The CFPB wants to implement change, but they are under great pressure to do nothing. The CFPB is currently accepting comments from the public on the proposed payday lending regulations. Hosting a screening of the film, The Ordinance, can increase your understanding of this complex issue and demonstrates the weight individual participation and comments can have on this issue that so dramatically impacts our community.

“The UWCT believes that this proposed rule is a good start towards protecting financially insecure families, but loopholes exist that would allow predatory lenders to avoid the intent of law,” said United Way of Central Texas Vice President of Community Impact. “I encourage everyone in the community to see the film and submit comments to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. We hope the CFPB and our local elected officials promote laws that strengthen our ability to provide safe and reasonable financial services in our community; laws that prevent predatory lending and reduce financial insecurity.”

To organize a screening for The Ordinance, please call the United Way of Central Texas at 254-778-8616.

Click HERE for more information on The Ordinance, and how to apply to host a screening.