CO-OPs such as CUs are ‘essential’ to meeting future challenges

The cooperative business model is a tool for economic success and self-determination, the National Cooperative Business Association (NCBA) CLUSA wrote in an open letter to all Republican and Democratic candidates running for president in 2020 this week. NCBA CLUSA President/CEO Doug O’Brien says cooperatives such as credit unions should be “an essential part of the solution” to growing challenges.

“Cooperatives (including credit unions, which are cooperatively-owned financial institutions) are democratically-governed businesses owned by the people who use them,” he writes. “As member-owned businesses, co-ops provide an alternative model to the near-sightedness of investor-owned businesses that are all too often driven by short-term gains at the expense of long-term viability. Instead, co-ops operate in the best interests of their members and communities by contributing to sustainable, inclusive economic development.

To address these challenges, O’Brien calls for policy solutions that include cooperative businesses through:

  • Increasing access to capital for businesses to startup, expand or innovate;


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