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Updated: Sep 4, 2019


CONTACT: Adrienne Wheeler 504-561-7312;

July 18, 2019, New Orleans – Last month, Louisiana Appleseed released its findings on financial stability in low-income and communities of color in its report A Vicious Cycle: How Predatory Lending and Court Fines & Fees Continue to Trap Communities of Color in Debt.  As a part of a statewide tour, Louisiana Appleseed is now taking these findings to Lafayette.

On July 29th at the Lafayette Main Public Library at 301 W. Congress Street, Louisiana Appleseed will host a community meeting from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.  During this meeting, Louisiana Appleseed will discuss its findings outlined in A Vicious Cycle, listen to residents’ current debt problems, and highlight current materials available to increase financial stability.  This meeting is open to the public.

A Vicious Cycle provides important information on the factors contributing to the racial inequities that prevent wealth generation in communities of color. Long-term consequences of resorting to high-cost financial products often perpetuates a cycle of crippling debt that compounds financial insecurity and entrenches families and communities in poverty. The report also highlights how low-income people of color also are trapped by harmful debt through the imposition of court fines and fees. By shedding light on these issues, Louisiana Appleseed empowers families with the knowledge of how to avoid some debt traps.

Louisiana Appleseed is a statewide nonprofit based in New Orleans, Louisiana that focuses on policy-level solutions by recruiting attorneys to provide free services through a research-oriented approach to policy change. Louisiana Appleseed’s mission is rooted in three pillars dedicated to increasing Access to: Justice, Opportunity, and Education. The creation and distribution of this report is a component of Louisiana Appleseed’s Access to Opportunity Program that focuses on securing access to wealth building strategies in low-income and communities of color.

Support for this project was graciously provided by the Annie E. Casey Foundation’s Southern Partnership to Reduce Debt, which is developing strategies to lessen the impact of criminal and civil judicial fines and fees, as well as medical fees and high-cost consumer products, on communities of color. The Annie E. Casey Foundation is a private philanthropy that creates a brighter future for the nation’s children by developing solutions to strengthen families, build paths to economic opportunity and transform struggling communities into safer and healthier places to live, work and grow. For more information, visit the Foundation’s website at


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