UAW Local Expresses Support For Group Fighting Plan

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UAW Local 245, which represents 1,700 Ford Motor Co. employees, has expressed its solidarity with DFCU Financial Credit Union members opposed to the CU's plan to convert to a for-profit bank.

The union's website, www.uawlocal245.org, has posted information about the CU's intentions and includes contact information for the anti-conversion group-DFCU Owners United-and also lists of questions to ask DFCU officials about how member benefits will be impacted.

"Most of us joined Dearborn Federal Credit Union many years ago," said Ed Huddleston, UAW Local 245 Recording Secretary/Committeeman/Webmaster. "We chose not to put our money in a bank. Banks are motivated by profit. Banks are on every corner and in every grocery store. There are no greedy stockholders driving up rates at credit unions by demanding a return on their investment."

Huddleston said he put the information about the "CU tragedy" at the request of many UAW Local 245 members who have mortgages, checking accounts and savings accounts of DFCU Financial.

"Credit unions are non-profit organizations that offer better interest rates on savings accounts and lower interest rates on loans," he said. "Many of us take advantage of the AAA group rates on car, home and life insurance, too."

The site includes advice from DFCU Owners United, which includes several prominent, former executives of DFCU Financial.

It urges members to become informed about their rights as credit union members, find out how management and board members benefit from the conversion and what members will get out of it.

"Many active and retired UAW Local 245 members belong to DFCU Financial (Dearborn Federal Credit Union)," Huddleston posted on the site. "The executive management team and board of directors of DFCU Financial decided to begin the process of converting from a not-for-profit credit union to a for-profit mutual savings bank. We will lose many of the benefits we get from belonging to a non-profit credit union."

It encourages its members to ask what happens to services that members currently enjoy, then lists a few examples, including access to shared branches, fee-free ATMs and more attractive rates.

"Tell your family, neighbors and friends about the proposed conversion and direct them to this website, http://www.savemycu.com," the site urges. "And, check your mail and carefully read all communications and disclosures from DFCU Financial."

The website also offers an address for members to write to DFCU Financial board members, supervisory committee members and the executive managers.

"The board chairman is Harold Lowman and the vice chairman is Dr. Robert A. Chapman," the site says. "You may want to consider marking your envelope personal and confidential."

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