Students open credit union accounts, call on Brown University to do the same

Check out this great action from last week at Brown University.

Brown students act in conjunction with students at campuses around the country to demand that their university bank in the community, and match their words with action

11/18/2011 – This Thursday, November 17th, a group of Brown students drove the the Central Falls branch of Navigant Credit Union to open accounts in response to the Responsible Endowment Coalition’s National Community Investment Week of Action.

Four students took part in an action that action organizer Daniel Stern ‘13 described as: “both about our personal values and where we bank as individuals, and a statement about how we think Brown University can do a better job keeping and investing its money in Rhode Island.”

Another participant, Jadrian Miles GS, noted that credit unions like Navigant are examples of community development financial institutions (CDFIs)that consistently and responsibly serve the banking and credit needs of their communities.

“This is about common sense and values, not charity,” added action organizer Ian Trupin ‘13, who noted that, “credit unions and other community financial institutions are perfectly safe and well-managed organizations that offer competitive interest rates to depositors.” Though he says that it is not public information, Trupin alleges that Brown University banks with notorious robo-signer Bank of America, whose ATMs are found in campus buildings and whose CEO, Brian Moynihan ’81, sits on Brown’s Board of Trustees.

“Community banks and credit unions like the one we visited today did not cause the financial crisis,” said action participant Stoni Tomson. “They didn’t get into the subprime loans that wrecked so many communities, invest in companies that hurt the environment, or drive up commodity prices by speculating. Unlike the big corporate banks, many are dedicated to the common good, which is why Brown University, which is also dedicated to the common good, should put its money in them,” she added.

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