As Prepared for Delivery on June 25, 2020
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In the spirit of fostering greater financial inclusion for all Americans, the NCUA, last week, issued its 2019 Annual Report to Congress on Preserving Minority Depository Institutions (opens new window), which details the financial condition of minority credit unions in 2019 and the agency’s efforts to preserve and promote the formation of minority depository institutions.
The release of this report last Friday was purposeful, as it fell on the 155th celebration of Juneteenth, the most widely recognized observance of the end of slavery in the United States. Although the Emancipation Proclamation had declared them free on January 1, 1863, enslaved men and women in Texas only learned about their freedom on June 19, 1865, when Union soldiers arrived in Galveston, Texas, and announced the “absolute equality of rights” between slave owners and slaves.
The recent protests across America and the COVID-19 pandemic, which has disproportionately affected minority communities, have illustrated the economic and financial challenges of minority, rural, and underserved communities. These events underscore the importance of minority depository institutions credit unions, which play a critical role in advancing financial inclusion and the economic well-being of minorities and underserved communities.
The agency’s efforts to preserve and promote the formation of new MDIs play a critical role in advancing financial inclusion and the economic well-being of minorities and underserved communities.
MDI credit unions represent approximately 10 percent of all federally insured credit unions.
The NCUA has and will continue to find more avenues of support for these institutions so much needed capital can flow into overlooked or underserved areas. At its heart, financial inclusion means expanding access to safe and affordable financial services for unbanked and underserved people and communities as well as broadening employment and business opportunities. Each one of us has a stake in this outcome.