ALBANY, N.Y. (9/26/08)--Credit unions can turn the economic chaos of today into a golden opportunity to fulfill their mission, says the Credit Union Association of New York. President/CEO William J. Mellin's message to the New York's credit unions in the league's weekly newsletter notes that credit unions can and should (The Point Sept. 22-26). Consumers worried about the economy have "one place to go, because one type of financial institution remains stable, sound, and welcoming to people from all walks of life," Mellin wrote. "We have been here before. Back in the 1930s, with banks failing at an alarming rate and millions struggling to make ends meet, credit unions enjoyed a great upsurge in membership," Mellin said. "People instinctively realized the value of a cooperative form of finance, owned by its members, where people were more important than money." Today the relevance of credit unions is highly visible once again, with major national media noting credit unions' stability amid economic turmoil. "The stage is set for another upsurge. Whether it happens, however, is up to us," Mellin wrote. "Potential credit unions can only join a credit union if they've heard of credit unions--if they understand what a credit union is, how it operates, what sets it apart," he wrote. "Because you are part of their communities, you are the face of credit unions to them. You have the best opportunity to communicate the credit union difference with the most impact," he added.