Minnesota Makes History With Its First Ever Black-Led Credit Union

Staff at Arise Community Credit Union

Arise Community Credit Union is making history as Minnesota's first Black-led credit union. Founded by the Association for Black Economic Power (ABEP), the credit union aims to address financial disparities and empower underserved communities in the state, offering essential banking services and promoting financial literacy.

Back in July 2016, after tragic incidents like the death of Philando Castile, the Association for Black Economic Power (ABEP) set out on a mission to establish a credit union in north Minneapolis, led by members of the Black community.

"There was a huge need. I've said it once and I'll say it a million times, no cavalry was coming. It was a banking desert and the financial institutions that were there were having a hostile relationship with the communities riddled with payday lenders. So people were left to become victims to payday lenders raking over 400% on a loan," said Debra Hurston, executive director of the ABEP, according to KARE11.

That's when they set out to launch Arise Community Credit Union, Minnesota's first Black-led credit union and the state's first new state-chartered credit union in over two decades.

Daniel Johnson, CEO-designee for Arise, emphasized the cooperative nature of credit unions, where members benefit from lower interest rates and higher returns. With over two decades of banking experience, Johnson expressed a commitment to serving all communities, particularly those historically underserved.

"We love all and serve all, so we're going to love and serve everyone. However, we're going to really make a concerted effort to reach toward the communities and groups that have been left, before us, behind," he said.

Arise will initially offer basic services like checking and savings accounts and consumer loans, with plans to expand its offerings gradually. All services are currently accessible through online banking but they're aiming to establish a physical location in north Minneapolis soon.

Moreover, Arise, which is set to enroll its first members by the year's end, also plans to organize events to promote financial literacy, helping members make informed decisions about their money.

Learn more about the credit union via its official website LearnAboutAriseCCU.org

Also, be sure to follow them on Instagram @AriseCCU

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