TORONTO (10/8/14)--Canadian credit unions hope to increase their profile with consumers through a national awareness campaign. They are also pushing for a tax credit to even the playing field with bankers.
The "My Credit Union Matters" campaign, led by Credit Union Central of Canada, asks Canadians to share their personal experiences with credit unions and send messages directly to the finance minister and local members of parliament (thestar.com Oct. 7).
As of Sept. 30, Canadian Minister Joe Oliver had received 2,200 letters of support for the country's credit unions, according to Credit Union Central of Canada.
The capital growth tax credit is about fairness and maintaining balance in the financial sector, according to Canadian credit unions.
Canadian credit unions, unlike credit unions in the United States, are currently taxed. Credit unions in Canada maintain that equal treatment with banks is not necessarily fair treatment. Banks have substantial advantages in raising capital through shares and other tools. Credit unions in comparison have limited methods of raising capital.
About 5.3 million Canadians belong to a credit union, which are known as a caisse populaire in Quebec. About 51% of residents in the province of Manitoba are credit union members.
Compared with traditional banks, co-ops and credit unions do a better-than-average job of resolving member issues. According to Ernst and Young's 2014 Global Consumer Banking Survey, 51% of co-op and credit union members report they are "very satisfied" with problem resolution, compared with only 25% for banking customers overall.