Credit unions have focused on their “People Helping People” philosophy since they first came into existence in the 1850s in Europe – founded on the principles of financial inclusion and equity. As the Association for credit unions across the Northwest, we continue to push for these principles today, and every day. To achieve this, we have a firm commitment to social justice.

Systemic racism and prejudice must end. We seek justice and inclusion for all — minorities, the LGBTQ community, veterans, women, and underserved consumers. To propel this mission, we are having intentional conversations, listening, learning, and taking action.

Credit unions throughout the region are speaking out against prejudice. We will participate in these conversations, keeping a dialogue that’s open and honest. In addition, we will provide educational opportunities for Northwest credit unions so they may convene, learn, share, and make a difference, together. We invite everyone in the Northwest Credit Union family, and beyond, to be part of a new chapter, as we take steps to ensure equity and inclusion for all.

As your Association, we will:

  • Take immediate steps with our programming to create a platform for this topic and discussion.
  • Continue to make space for intentional conversations. That is just the first step on what will be a long journey.
  • Convene credit union leaders region-wide to create a DEI Task Force, meeting on an ongoing basis, to research and implement programs that meaningfully engage Black communities, other communities of color, and those who are under-represented in financial inclusion.
  • Host dedicated Micro-Community events to learn more about DEI, and ensure this topic is at the forefront of credit union culture development.
  • Build DEI topics into Association programming, so all credit union employees have access, can learn more, and have a voice in these important conversations.
  • Dedicate staff resources to support member credit union groups that are developing relationships with culturally specific organizations and share their best practices to amplify their work. 

These first steps will reinforce our action-oriented commitment as a Movement to drive change in our own communities. We are intentional about our words and our actions to advance our commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion.

As an employer, NWCUA is taking a deeper dive into diversity, equity, and inclusion. Our path includes having intentional DEI conversations with staff, the NWCUA Board of Directors, as well as looking at our governance structure.

If you have interest in joining us to advance this work, please contact Northwest Credit Union Foundation Executive Director, Sharee Adkins, or AVP of Member Engagement, Carmen Vigil.