Among everything we collectively find abhorrent about George Floyd’s death and the injustices that so many fight against, we must also consider what we stand for.
Economic inequality drives a deep and real wedge between the haves and have-nots. This goes well beyond someone’s financial position. Wealth influences whether or not someone’s voice is heard. And it means that no matter how hard and how high some people pull their bootstraps up, the deck will always be stacked against them. The global pandemic has only exacerbated problems that already existed.
As credit unions, we fight against economic inequality and injustice. If we consider what we stand for, it boils down to this: Financial Democracy.
This isn’t a new idea. The tenets of Financial Democracy are otherwise known as the “Cooperative Principles”. But it’s not always clear what those principles mean and what our commitment is to uphold them. Some see the Cooperative Principles as something that’s optional or not related to business. Seldom do we take time to reflect on how they influence our choices and our actions.
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