Many American institutions could learn from credit unions, Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) said Tuesday before a packed house at the CUNA Governmental Affairs Conference (GAC). Sinema is a member of the Senate Banking Committee and aso the ranking member of the Homeland Security subcommittee on regulatory affairs and federal management.
“The philosophy of America’s credit unions is one that Washington could benefit from. People helping people. By carrying out and relying on that simple principle, you help your members build better, more secure lives,” she said. “And that’s why we work so well together.”
Sinema shared the story of her childhood, when her middle-class family lost nearly everything, including their car and home, living in an abandoned gas station. Having experienced such hardship, she said she was especially impressed by credit union efforts during the recent government shutdown.
“You all know what it takes to help hardworking families in your communities when they fall on hard times. During this most recent irresponsible government shutdown, credit unions across the country stepped up to the plate to help families who were affected,” she said. “You provided relief programs and interest free loans to families worried about putting food on the table through no part of their own.
“Your efforts gave federal employees in Arizona and across the country the financial certainty to get by. Your actions embodied the motto of people helping people,” she added.
Going forward, Sinema said she planned to build off the success of the enacted-into-law Senior$afe Act, which protects financial services employees who report suspected elder financial abuse, and to work with her Homeland Security subcommittee Chair Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.) to continue to cut red tape.
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