Dear Boards of Directors and Chief Executive Officers:
The NCUA’s 2021 Diversity Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Summit in early November generated considerable energy and highlighted progress within the credit union industry around the principles of diversity, equity, and inclusion. In all, more than 800 attendees participated in this event, and most left the conference with a sense of possibility and empowerment around the positive impact DEI can make not only in their credit union’s products and services, but also the communities they serve. The voluntary Credit Union Diversity Self-Assessment is an appropriate next step for moving ahead on the path from intention to action, which was our theme for the 2021 DEI Summit.
Therefore, I am now inviting you to explore how your credit union can benefit by using the NCUA’s voluntary Credit Union Diversity Self-Assessment. This valuable tool is designed to help you evaluate and advance your credit union’s diversity policies and practices. The self-assessment is an excellent place to start or strengthen your investment in diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging. I encourage you to use the tool, available at cudiversity.ncua.gov, and confidentially submit your results to the NCUA’s Office of Minority and Women Inclusion (OMWI) by January 15, 2022.
Your credit union can use this online tool to create a baseline for action, such as making the commitment to develop new products and services aimed at addressing the needs of communities of color, increasing investment in underserved areas, and improving community marketing and outreach. The self-assessment is voluntary. It is not part of the NCUA’s or a state regulator’s examination processes, and it has no impact on your CAMELS rating. Simply stated, there are many benefits and no risk in confidentially sharing your diversity and inclusion journey with the NCUA.
The Credit Union Diversity Self-Assessment, instructions for completing it, and several useful diversity-related tools and resources are available on our Credit Union Diversity webpage. The NCUA uses anonymized data from the self-assessment to report on progress and trends in credit union diversity-related activities. The information you confidentially submit in the self-assessment goes directly to OMWI, which aggregates the data and only shares the results anonymously, primarily in the NCUA’s annual OMWI Congressional Report and in the annual Voluntary Credit Union Diversity Self-Assessment Results Report. The NCUA will not publish any information identifying a particular credit union or individual without written approval.
Each year the number of self-assessment submissions has increased, but we are a long way from seeing the benefits of industry-wide participation, which will help us gather and report more meaningful data. I therefore encourage credit unions of all sizes, especially those with 100 or more employees, to move from intention to action by completing the Credit Union Diversity Self-Assessment and sharing your results with OMWI. Submissions for 2021 will be collected until January 15, 2022. After that date, the portal will remain open, but submissions will become part of the 2022 data set.
If you have any questions, suggestions, or simply want to share a best practice, please contact NCUA’s OMWI at 703.518.1650 or by email at CUDiversity@ncua.gov.
Todd M. Harper