Record 23.5M Underserved Added During 2002

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A record 23.5-million potential members in underserved and low-income communities in the U.S. were added during 2002, according to NCUA. Over the past two years, federal credit unions have adopted 706 underserved areas, totaling 39.6 million potential new members.

The agency is attributing the increase to its streamlined application process for expanding into underserved communities, and Chairman Dennis Dollar's "Access Across America" initiative.

In addition, Dollar said that 306,000 Americans also became eligible for membership as the result of NCUA's faith- based credit union initiative, which encourages faith-based credit unions to extend services to underserved neighborhoods in close proximity to their locations.

"I look forward to the day when the residents of underserved areas have the choice of as may credit unions as they do of pawn shops and check-cashing outlets today," said Dollar.

Region Approved Potential Members

2001

1 19 754,458

2 31 1,440,625

3 79 4,283,816

4 51 1,766,971

5 71 5,650,892

6 31 2,229,875

2002

1 37 1,749,268

2 109 5,705,478

3 70 3,489,840

4 84 4,234,721

5 77 5,578,120

6 47 2,793,646

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