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“People Helping People” & Social Justice: A Message from The League

Black Lives Matter
Jun 11, 2020
By Sammy Dennis
  • The CU Difference
The credit union philosophy of “People Helping People” is practiced by Wisconsin’s credit unions without exception or limitation. As a Movement, we are core-committed to providing equitable and inclusive service to all members and to positively impacting communities. 

From the very start, Wisconsin law has charged that a credit union “provide an opportunity for its members to improve their economic and social conditions.” (186.01). Credit unions have both the responsibility and the honor to better the lives of their members and meaningfully address the issues they face, no matter race, religion, sexual orientation, ability, gender expression, citizen status, or financial capability. 

Tragically, it is all too clear from the global demonstrations that have followed in the wake of the deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade, David McAtee, and Ahmaud Arbery, combined with the disproportionate impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on Black communities, that we remain agonizingly far from where we should be in creating a just and equitable society for people of color. And this is only the most recent chapter in a struggle that spans back centuries.

The pain, grief, and anger stemming from these injustices and all that preceded them propels Wisconsin’s credit unions to vocally and unapologetically re-commit to “People Helping People” in both word and deed, and to do the difficult and necessary work to improve the economic and social conditions of their members. Much has been done, but there is still very much to do.  

Black lives matter. The League is duty-bound to ensure that we actively listen to and stand behind communities of color, pledge our full attention to addressing and dismantling systemic issues, provide long-term equitable solutions, learn from and take accountability for our mistakes, and invest in a far better future.

About The Author

Sammy Dennis is the Director of Communications for The Wisconsin Credit Union League.