MIAMI LAKES, Fla., Feb. 22, 2022 /PRNewswire-PRWeb/ -- JetStream Federal Credit Union's CEO, Jeanne Kucey, appeared before the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and Consumer Protection, where she appealed to the Committee members to fund credit unions like JetStream so they can better meet urgent capital needs in their communities. Mrs. Kucey testified on Capitol Hill along with Robert James II, of Carver Financial Corporation and Joel Griffith of the Heritage Foundation. The three experts gave testimony about the role of Community Development Institutions, known as CDFIs, and Minority Depository Institutions in supporting communities.
JetStream Federal, with branches in South Florida and Puerto Rico, is a CDFI, and in this capacity, the credit union provides loans to individuals with low incomes, frequently in distressed communities. CDFIs include community development banks, credit unions, loan funds, and venture funds.
At the hearing, Mrs. Kucey called attention to the important impact her institution makes, especially in an era of historic wealth inequality. "CDFIs play a crucial role in the development of local communities. Their financial services support the growth of local businesses and the jobs they provide for the community," said Mrs. Kucey.
She also pointed out the importance of credit unions during times of crisis. In her testimony, Mrs. Kucey referred to steps JetStream Federal took in the wake of Hurricane Maria to ensure financial continuity for residents of Puerto Rico. "We knew that we had to act through no-cost, zero percent APR short-term loans, deferment of existing loan payments, elimination of transactional fees, and financial coaching for our members who were dealing with active insurance cases and attempting to rebuild their homes," she said.
As an example of JetStream Federal's ongoing effort to serve the community, the credit union recently launched its Increasing Climate Resiliency and Health Equity through Energy Efficiency (ICRHEEE) strategy, which helps low-income homeowners improve their homes to better face the impact of climate change. The program includes loans for home improvements such as purchasing high-efficiency appliances and installing solar panels. In addition, the program offers borrowers financial counseling and coaching.
"Personal or financial setbacks should not prohibit aspiring individuals from pursuing economic success," Mrs. Kucey added. "JetStream aids low-income or economically distressed communities and fights wealth inequality, and we are proud to contribute to the conversation on the national stage. Our sole focus is to lead our members down the path to prosperity."
For more information about JetStream Federal Credit Union, or to schedule an interview, please contact Meieli Sawyer at [email protected].
About JetStream Federal Credit Union
JetStream Federal Credit Union is a full-service financial cooperative with $230 million in assets. The 72-year-old credit union has 5 branches located in Miami, Miami Lakes, Doral and Hialeah, Florida and San Juan, Puerto Rico. Membership is open to anyone (and their family members) that lives, works, worships or attends school in Miami-Dade County, Florida, and anyone (and their family members) that lives, works, worships or attends school in Carolina, Trujillo Alto and San Juan, Puerto Rico. All persons (and their family members) who work in any of our select companies and organizations located in Miami-Dade County and the select areas of Puerto Rico may also join. Membership is open to businesses and other legal entities located in Miami-Dade County, Florida and the select areas of Puerto Rico. For additional information, visit our website at http://www.jetstreamfcu.org.
Meieli Sawyer, The Weinbach Group, 305-668-0070, [email protected]
SOURCE JetStream Federal Credit Union