Why it is important to protect access to cash

Wednesday is the deadline for submissions to be made to the Treasury on how access to cash on our high streets can be maintained.

Yes, I know, we are all rightly distracted by other key issues of the moment – lockdown, vaccines and fretting over Christmas.

But I trust the country's army of consumer groups does not miss this golden opportunity to impress upon the Government the importance of ensuring that people can always get access to cash on their local high street – as well as continuing to be allowed to use it as a payment option at most retailers.

Although the pandemic has played into the hands of those who crave for a cashless society – namely the banks and global electronic payment giants such as Visa and Mastercard – there is no doubt that most people are not yet ready (and probably never will be) to discard physical cash. Payment choice should be a given.

It's why The Mail on Sunday launched the 'Save Our Cash' campaign last summer, calling for the Government to act decisively to protect cash.

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The cashless society from an ethical point of view

The debate about the move towards a cashless society has been at the center of the scene for several years, now. Various angles have been taken by economists, politicians, banking institutions and sociologists. Beyond the technicalities of the debate, lies the question of freedom, of inter-citizen solidarity and of governmental responsibility. The debate cannot remain in the hands of financial specialists, it is first and foremost an ethical, political and societal issue.

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