May 05, 2021

Berger to Congress: Reject postal banking programs, empower CUs

danIn an op-ed published in Morning Consult, NAFCU President and CEO Dan Berger called on Congress to empower credit unions to help the nation's 63 million unbanked and underbanked consumers as opposed to supporting complex, untested postal banking programs.

"There are too many unbanked and underbanked American consumers relying on high-interest, high-fee loans through check-cashing services, pawn shops, payday lenders and paycheck advance shops," wrote Berger.
As safe, affordable, and consumer-focused financial institutions, credit unions are well equipped to meet the needs of our underserved communities – but lawmakers must pass policy changes.

According to Berger, "Congress should look to remove regulatory barriers and allow credit unions to serve more communities in need of affordable, consumer-centric financial services, by allowing all types of credit unions to add underserved areas to their fields of membership."

NAFCU recently wrote to lawmakers outlining the association’s concerns with postal banking, and called on them to provide credit unions with additional tools and flexibility to better meet their members' financial need.

"While the postal service works to improve its core business of mail delivery, policymakers should focus on real steps that can improve the current system," concluded Berger. "The solution to providing service to America’s unbanked and underbanked populations is clear: Expand credit unions’ ability to serve those communities."

The association will continue to advocate for policies that allow credit unions to better serve their 124 million members and local communities. 

Read Berger’s full op-ed here.