Washington, D.C. — Today, Rep. Donald M. Payne, Jr. reintroduced his Payment Choice Act to protect American currency as a form of payment for goods and services. The bill would make it illegal for retail businesses to reject cash for in-person, consumer transactions at stores nationwide.
“Every American should have the right to pay in cash,” said Rep. Donald M. Payne, Jr. “There are too many stores and businesses that want to reject it in favor of digital payments. But cash is the only option available for millions of Americans to pay for food, housing and other essentials. In addition, I am concerned about the safety and privacy of the data that companies are collecting from consumers during routine purchases. Besides, American cash is a lesson in American history. A few years ago, we fought over who should be represented on our currency. Now, companies want to eliminate currency completely.”
Currently, there are 55 million Americans who are unable to pay for necessities with a credit card, debit card, or digital payment. These Americans would be left out of the economy completely if cash is banned. Another issue with digital payments is the privacy of economic transactions. Americans need a payment option that protects them from the fraud, identity theft, and data collecting that can occur during digital payments. Data collection is a $200 billion industry and recent company data breaches in the U.S. and worldwide have revealed private information on millions of customers. In addition, cash is the only way to pay for items during a natural disaster. If a hurricane or other catastrophe were to knock out a power grid anywhere in the country, Americans would not be able to pay for critical, life-saving supplies to protect them and their families.