The Expanding Financial Access for Underserved Communities Act would significantly address the epidemic of the unbanked and underbanked, CUNA wrote to the Senate Banking, Housing, And Urban Affairs Subcommittee on Housing, Transportation, and Community Development Wednesday.
“The Expanding Financial Access for Underserved Communities Act would significantly address the epidemic of the unbanked and underbanked in the United States by making it easier for consumers in areas without sufficient financial services providers to access credit unions,” the letter reads. “We strongly support this legislation, which would make three changes to the Federal Credit Union Act to enable and encourage credit unions to serve underserved and abandoned communities and promote financial inclusion to all at no cost to the taxpayer.”
Specifically, the bill would:
CUNA also reiterated its support of the Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) Fund, which supports 417 CFDI-certified credit unions, and other institutions.
“Nearly one in three CDFI-certified institutions and loan funds are credit unions. The mission of CDFI financial institutions is vital to reaching and meeting the financial services needs in traditionally underserved areas and populations in both rural and urban America,” the letter reads. “CDFI certification provides federal resources and creates a favorable regulatory environment to facilitate meeting the needs of these communities and providing accessible and affordable access to mainstream financial services such as credit products and checking accounts.”