Letter to Senator Paul Sarbanes regarding financial literacy
July 29, 2003
The Honorable Paul Sarbanes
Ranking Member, Senate Banking Committee
309 Hart Senate Building
Washington, D.C. 20510
Dear Senator Sarbanes:
On behalf of the Credit Union National Association (CUNA), which represents more than 90 percent of our nation's more than 10,000 state and federal credit unions and 84 million credit union members, I would like to thank you for your introduction of legislation to increase financial literacy and education opportunities for Americans.
CUNA and its member credit unions applaud your efforts to create an interagency Committee, headed by the Secretary of Treasury, to promote financial literacy education through the coordination of federal, state and local governments, as well as non-profit organizations and private enterprises. Financial literacy is an important tool for both students and adults of all ages, incomes and backgrounds. Ensuring individuals have proper financial skills will lead to financially stable families and communities, helping to achieve the American dreams of college, homeownership and retirement security.
Credit unions have sought to promote financial literacy at the root of our communities- our nation's schools. To aid in this endeavor, CUNA has partnered with the National Endowment for Financial Education (NEFE) and the Cooperative Extension Service to provide schools with free workbooks on financial literacy that can easily fit into an existing curriculum. Many credit unions have volunteered their time to teach the materials to better prepare students for college, covering issues such as credit cards, interest, minimum payments, and checking accounts. Oftentimes, the financial tools that youth learn are shared with parents and other family members. And, many credit unions also are providing similar training to adults in their communities.
Again, CUNA and its member credit unions strongly support your efforts to develop a national strategy to bring financial literacy to all Americans by creating an interagency Committee that unites government and public sector educational outreach.
Daniel A. Mica
President & CEO