Saturday, February 20, 2016

Your Credit Union and the General Election

As the community of Kilcullen is a long-standing supporter of its local Credit Union and the Credit Union movement, it may be appropriate that all who plan to vote next week be aware of the 'promises' relating to CUs in the various party manifestoes, writes Brian Byrne.

The Irish League of Credit Unions has produced a publication with the substance of each party view on CUs and the possible role for them in the larger economy in the life of the next Government, whatever the form of that might be.

The note below is the introduction to the publication, and there's a link to it as well, which I have repeated a number of times.

Whatever about other policies being kicked about at the moment, this is one that should concern all of us who value and use the very 'ground up' credit union movement, a clear modern manifestation of the traditional Irish 'meitheal' ethos.

Worth a read.

The main parties have now published their manifestos in advance of the general election and all contain commitments on credit unions.

This synopsis, together with links to the full documents offers an overview of the various party positions. It should be noted that credit unions enjoy support among independents TDs and candidates and, among parties who do not have outgoing Oireachtas members.

The fact that all manifestos across the board contain commitments on credit unions is a result of lobbying by the League nationally and credit unions on the ground over the past months. Our lobbying was based on advancing the Six Strategic Steps, the League’s policy platform on areas including micro-lending, credit for social housing and small business as well as strongly opposing CP88. These campaigns are work in progress.

We are not naive and we know that the value of these election commitments has yet to be realised. They do, however, ensure that the day after the votes are counted the League is in a position to go back to the parties likely to form the next government and seek to ensure that their commitments are repeated in the Programme for Government and implemented.