Designation aims to enhance understanding of how these credit unions serve communities in need.
June 1, 2023
NCUA is designating June as Minority Depository Institution Awareness Month to enhance the public’s understanding of the vital work minority depository institution credit unions perform in underserved communities nationwide.
“Service, opportunity, and financial security are central to the mission and work of minority depository institutions,” Chairman Todd M. Harper said. “One in ten federally insured credit unions is an MDI, and while they tend to be smaller than many other financial institutions, they play a much greater role in expanding access to safe, fair, and affordable financial products and services and supporting local development in under-resourced communities. This month, the NCUA acknowledges their efforts and affirms our commitment to ensuring these credit unions remain an integral part of the financial services system.”
Initiatives during MDI Awareness Month include:
A June 8 webinar on how MDI credit unions help minority communities access safe, fair, and affordable financial services and promote greater financial security;
The release of the 2022 MDI Annual Report to Congress;
The 2023 Community Development Revolving Loan Fund grants round for low-income and MDI credit unions, open until June 30; and
Updates and information on the NCUA’s online training, resources, and support programs tailored to the specific needs of MDIs.
An MDI credit union is defined as having a majority of its current members, board of directors, and the community it serves consisting of individuals who are Black American, Asian American, Hispanic American, or Native American. Credit unions self-designate as MDIs by responding to the minority questions on the CUOnline Profile.
In 2015, the NCUA launched the MDI Preservation Program, offering technical and educational services to address the unique needs of MDIs. As a result of the agency’s efforts, Congress has now recognized the MDI designation as a qualifying factor for Community Development Revolving Loan Fund grants.
The NCUA also has adjusted its examination process to accommodate the distinctive business model of MDIs. This important evolution in the examination process provides the NCUA with greater insight into MDIs’ strategies and member needs while providing MDIs with useful metrics to benchmark their work against their true peers. This leads to enhanced services to members and under-resourced communities. For 2023, the NCU has increased the staff hours allocated to MDIs in the Small Credit Union and MDI Support Program to a total 5,500 hours.
Section 308 of the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery, and Enforcement Act of 1989 established several goals related to MDIs, including:
Preserving the number of MDIs;
Preserving the minority character of institutions in cases involving mergers or acquisition;
Providing technical assistance to prevent insolvency;
Promoting and encouraging the creation of new MDIs; and
Providing training, technical assistance, and educational programs.