CUNA Research: Industry-wide DEI efforts increased in past two years

New issues brief reports that over 60% of credit unions increased their focus on diversity

March 14, 2022

March 14, 2022
Washington, DC

Credit Union National Association (CUNA) today released an issues brief showing an uptick in credit union diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) efforts. Using results from an annual membership survey, the DEI Issues Brief shows trends in credit unions’ DEI journey over a two-year period, from 2019 to 2021.

“This report reflects an important culture shift across our movement,” said Samira Salem, CUNA Vice President of DEI. “It’s great to see credit unions make significant strides toward their organizational commitment to DEI. While there is still room to improve, I’m confident that credit unions of all sizes are equipped for the road ahead.”

CUNA found that in 2021, 60% of credit unions are focused on DEI, up from 37% in 2019, and 80% of credit union members now belong to a credit union that is focused on DEI. One in three of the credit unions surveyed have DEI integrated into their strategies or have plans in place, if not already implemented.

According to the brief, credit union asset size plays a significant role in the maturity of DEI efforts. About 20% of the largest credit unions―those with $500 million or more in assets―have strategically aligned their DEI endeavors with organizational goals, compared to just 5%-7% of their smaller counterparts. However, credit unions with less than $100 million in assets improved in 2021, becoming nearly twice as likely to focus on DEI in 2021 compared to 2019.

The rapid expansion of DEI efforts signals that DEI is central to the credit union mission, vital to advocacy efforts, effective for organizational performance, and critical to the movement’s survival.


About CUNA:           
Credit Union National Association (CUNA) is the only national association that advocates on behalf of all of America’s credit unions, which are owned by 130 million consumer members. CUNA, along with its network of affiliated state credit union leagues, delivers unwavering advocacy, continuous professional growth and operational confidence to protect the best interests of all credit unions. For more information about CUNA, visit To find your nearest credit union, visit

Deshundra Jefferson 
CUNA Communications 
(202) 809-4081