(Ottawa, ON) – A new all-party caucus that will improve communication between parliamentarians and the credit unions that provide financial services in their ridings, is being welcomed enthusiastically by Canadian Credit Union Association (CCUA) and the country's financial co-operatives.
Government and opposition MPs agreed to form a caucus that will work across party lines to increase awareness of the important work that credit unions and caisses populaires do as unique players in the financial services industry. The caucus will hear from representatives of financial co-operatives and serve as a collaborative forum for MPs and Senators to work with the sector to find innovative ways to achieve economic growth and address community concerns and challenges.
"We are encouraged by the real interest among MPs to work closer with credit unions and with each other to better understand how our co-operative structure leads to good public policy outcomes for their constituents," said Martha Durdin, president and CEO, CCUA. "We see this approach at work every day in strong support for small businesses and in tackling issues like financial literacy."
The founding members of the caucus are MPs Francesco Sorbara (Vaughan-Woodbridge, Liberal), Dan Albas (Central Okanagan-Similkameen-Nicola, Conservative), Alexandre Boulerice (Rosemont -- La Petite-Patrie, New Democrat) and Elizabeth May (Saanich -- Gulf Islands, Green). The MPs have received early support from BC-based First West Credit Union, CCUA and the Desjardins Group of caisses populaires.
"First West is genuinely pleased to see MPs and Senators come together in the all-party credit union caucus to better understand and explore issues facing today's financial co-operatives," said Launi Skinner, CEO of First West Credit Union. "Credit unions and caisses populaires have for more than 100 years elevated the economic and social well-being of communities across Canada."
While similar all-party groups have been created for other sectors, this is believed to be the first such caucus dedicated exclusively to credit unions at the federal level. The founding meeting of the caucus took place on Tuesday. A future meeting is being planned.