Defense Credit Unions specialize in serving military and veterans around the world

WASHINGTON, DC (January 6, 2020) — Credit Unions have provided services that banks couldn’t provide since the early 1900’s as a not-for-profit, member owned organizations, supporting the community and paying dividends to its member base instead of stockholders.

As community needs evolved so did the credit union movement with the inception of Defense Credit Unions that have served our military for nearly 100 years undertaking a variety of roles on the military bases where they operate. Defense credit unions are federal and state-chartered credit unions that specifically serve the military, DoD civilian personnel, veterans and their families.

It takes a special kind of credit union to serve the military and such service requires demonstrating the “people helping people” motto above and beyond the call of duty.  Defense Credit Unions pride themselves on promoting the morale and welfare of our military and maintain the highest of standards by truly “Serving Those Who Serve Our Country.” Here are a few ways that a Defense Credit Union’s service is different.

  • Financial Services. The Department of Defense does not have the legal authority, budgetary, or manpower resources to provide financial services to military members. Thus, Defense Credit Unions fulfill this role and save taxpayer dollars while preserving critical manpower.
  • Financial Protection. Defense Credit Unions provide protection from predatory lenders. The DoD does not always police the amount of advertising and sponsorship from these establishments inside the gate.  Yet, the consequences of predatory lending schemes detract from the mission, usually at the worst time.
  • Financial Education. Defense Credit Unions are required by DoD Regulation to provide financial readiness education. Fortunately, this type of training is what all credit unions do and are especially poised to provide military financial education.

Defense Credit Unions meet our members where they are, especially our military service members. This includes operating overseas with “brick and mortar” locations on foreign soil to ensure our military service members and their families have access to financial services.

In 1985, Defense Credit Unions needed someone to create an ATM/Point of Sale Network since neither of the large ATM/Point of Sale Networks were interested or lacked the capacity to serve our military bases. Thus, the Armed Forces Financial Network was created to answer the call on moving military pay to an EFT environment. Additionally, Plus, the Armed Forces Financial Network gives a significant portion of its revenue back to the military community. This is “win-win-win” for the DoD, our military members, and all Defense Credit Unions.

Our main concern is always the servicemember and their unique needs and stresses and the mission of Defense Credit Unions will always be “Serving Those Who Serve Our Country.”

About Defense Credit Union Council (DCUC)

The Defense Credit Union Council is the trusted resource for credit unions on all military and veteran matters. By maintaining a close and constant liaison with the Pentagon, Capitol Hill, and NCUA, the Council champions the interests of credit unions serving our military and veteran communities by coordinating policy, procedures, and legislation impacting morale and welfare, financial readiness, and the delivery of quality financial products and services. Organized in 1963, the Council’s membership is comprised of more than 180 credit unions with over 37 million members. If you would like more information about this topic, please contact DCUC at


Haleigh Laverty



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