Friday, 17 October 2008
Support your local Credit Union
Yesterday was International Credit Union Day, so I visited the Treorci branch of the Dragonsavers Credit Union. Dragonsavers is a proper Welsh co-operative with five branches in Rhondda Cynon Taf. The staff were in good spirits, despite the doom and gloom in the economy, peoples’ money is safe here. I've been a member of Plaid Cymru's credit union for years, and I've joined Dragonsavers now too.
Members of the creidt union share their finances through a mutual bond of common ownership. Affordable loans (2% which can reduce down to 1.5%) are issued to members in amounts based on how much they have saved. Loans can come in handy to pay for Christmas or holidays. Credit unions are all regulated by the FSA and are very safe ways of looking after your money. The credit crunch will have no affect on them. They are protected from the reckless behaviour that has prevailed in the City of London, and aren’t involved in any risky investments. Credit unions operate an ethical loans policy so their risks are minimised. Now is a good time to consider joining a credit union. The One Wales government has already provided publicity and support for credit unions to expand- there was a further announcement yesterday that we are aiming to give areas of Wales access to a credit union. The more members a credit union has, the more they are able to provide a greater variety of services. They'll encourage you to save, but the minimum is £1 per week, and loans are available straight away.
Credit unions offer one small step towards a less competitive and more co-operative way of living. I am glad to celebrate them today.