06-20-2018  7:42 pm      •     
The Skanner Report
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NEWS BRIEFS

AG Rosenblum Seeks Info from Oregonians

Oregon Attorney General seeks information on children separated from families at border ...

Community Forum: How Does Law Enforcement Interact With Vulnerable Populations?

Forum will focus on public safety and examine mental health and addiction issues ...

King County Council Recognizes Juneteenth

The Metropolitan King County Council recognizes a true 'freedom day' in the United States ...

Unite Oregon Hosts ‘Mourn Pray Love, and Take Action’ June 20

Community is invited to gather at Terry Schrunk Plaza at 6 p.m. on World Refugee Day ...

MRG Foundation Announces Spring 2018 Grantees

Recipients include Oregon DACA Coalition, Kúkátónón Children’s African Dance Troupe, Komemma Cultural Protection Association ...

Oregon gun-storage proposal won't make November ballot

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Oregonians will not be voting this fall on a proposal to require safe gun storage.Supporters of the initiative petition said Wednesday there isn't enough time to obtain the more than 88,000 valid signatures necessary to get the item on the November ballot.They had until...

Oregon Senator sues governor, state revenue department

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — An Oregon state senator has filed a lawsuit against top lawmakers and the governor, saying the passage of a controversial March tax measure violated the state constitution.Brian Boquist, a Republican from Dallas, Oregon, filed the suit Tuesday in state tax court, naming...

Suspect arrested in 1986 killing of 12-year-old Tacoma girl

TACOMA, Wash. (AP) — Tacoma police have arrested a man suspected of killing a 12-year-old girl more than three decades ago.The News Tribune reports 66-year-old Gary Hartman was booked into Pierce County Jail Wednesday afternoon on suspicion of first-degree murder in the death of Michella...

Trudeau: Canada to legalize marijuana on Oct. 17

TORONTO (AP) — Marijuana will be legal nationwide in Canada starting Oct. 17 in a move that should take market share away from organized crime and protect the country's youth, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Wednesday.The Senate gave final passage to the bill to legalize cannabis on...

OPINION

How Washington’s 'School Achievement Index' Became School Spending Index

New assessment categorizes schools not by quality of education, but level of funding officials believe they should receive ...

Black Mamas Are Dying. We Can Stop It.

Congresswoman Robin Kelly plans to improve access to culturally-competent care with the MOMMA Act ...

Hey, Elected Officials: No More Chicken Dinners...We Need Policy

Jeffrey Boney says many elected officials who visit the Black community only during the election season get a pass for doing nothing ...

Juneteenth: Freedom's Promise Still Denied

Juneteenth is a celebration of the de facto end of slavery, but the proliferation of incarceration keeps liberation unfulfilled ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

AP Explains: US has split up families throughout its history

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Some critics of the forced separation of Latino children from their migrant parents say the practice is unprecedented. But it's not the first time the U.S. government has split up families, detained children or allowed others to do so .Throughout American history,...

The Latest: Messi gets a chance to save face against Croatia

MOSCOW (AP) — The Latest on Wednesday at the World Cup (all times local):12:16 a.m.Lionel Messi is going to have a hard time keeping up with Cristiano Ronaldo at this year's World Cup.Ronaldo has all of Portugal's goals, a tournament-leading four so far, and has been getting in digs at Messi...

Ex-NAACP chief who posed as black pleads not guilty to fraud

SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — A former NAACP leader in Washington state whose life unraveled after she was exposed as a white woman pretending to be black pleaded not guilty to welfare fraud on Wednesday.Nkechi Diallo, formerly known as Rachel Dolezal, made a brief appearance in Spokane County...

ENTERTAINMENT

Jimmy Fallon reveals personal pain following Trump fallout

NEW YORK (AP) — Jimmy Fallon is opening up about the personal anguish he felt following the backlash to his now-infamous hair mussing appearance with Donald Trump.The host of "The Tonight Show" tells The Hollywood Reporter he "made a mistake" and apologized "if I made anyone mad." He adds...

After 4,000 episodes, a halt for Jerry Springer's show

NEW YORK (AP) — Somehow it doesn't seem right for Jerry Springer to exit quietly.There should be one last thrown chair or a bleep-filled tirade, at the very least. Instead, it was announced with no fanfare this week that he will stop making new episodes of his memorably raucous talk show,...

Peter Fonda apologizes for 'vulgar' Barron Trump tweet

NEW YORK (AP) — Peter Fonda apologized Wednesday for a late-night Twitter rant in which he suggested 12-year-old Barron Trump should be ripped from "his mother's arms and put in a cage with pedophiles."The all-capitals tweet in the wee hours went on to call President Donald Trump an...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

GOP senator defends EPA chief, calls ethics allegations lies

WASHINGTON (AP) — A Republican senator who had expressed concerns about Environmental Protection Agency...

AP Explains: US has split up families throughout its history

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Some critics of the forced separation of Latino children from their migrant...

Trump supporters steadfast despite the immigration uproar

CINCINNATI (AP) — Cincinnati resident Andrew Pappas supported President Trump's decision to separate...

Burger King says sorry for Russian World Cup pregnancy ad

MOSCOW (AP) — Burger King has apologized for offering a lifetime supply of Whoppers to Russian women who...

Volgograd provides the proper perspective at World Cup

VOLGOGRAD, Russia (AP) — Nearly 60 years since it changed its name to Volgograd, the Russian city once...

Live animals, meat, ivory, wood seized in trafficking stings

PARIS (AP) — Thousands of live animals along with tons of meat, ivory, pangolin scales and timber were...

hundred dollar bills
By Christen McCurdy | The Skanner News

 An FDIC report released earlier this fall reported a decrease in the number of people nationwide without access to basic financial services – but said the number of unbanked Portlanders is up.

In the Portland area in 2015, 23.6 percent of households did not have an account with a traditional financial institution. That number is up from 20.5 percent, the number released in 2013. Statewide the number is higher, with 25.6 reporting access to a lack of traditional banking services, up from 21.6 percent in 2013.

The FDIC did not break out demographic data for specific regions, but its survey did find that racial minorities, especially African Americans and Latinos, tended to have higher rates of being unbanked. (The unbanked rate among Black households decreased from 20.6 percent in 2013 to 18.2 percent in 2015 – but Black Americans are still more likely to be without a bank account than the general population.) Approximately 24.5 million U.S. households, composed of 51.1 million adults and 16.3 million children – or about 20 percent of households were did not have bank accounts in 2015, unchanged from 2013.

The FDIC also tracks the number of “underbanked” households – defined as having a checking or savings account and using one of the following products or services from an alternative financial services provider in the last 12 months: money orders, check cashing, international remittances, payday loans, refund anticipation loans, rent-to-own services, pawn shop loans or auto title loans.

Lower-income people, people with less education and people with disabilities, were also less likely to have bank accounts – and according to the National Disability Institute, African Americans with disabilities are particularly likely to do without banking services: two-thirds of African Americans with disabilities are unbanked or underbanked, as compared with 46 percent of all adults with disabilities.

The FDIC notes financially underserved people are more vulnerable to crime – and lose time and money seeking out financial services like check cashing.

The report also says households that don’t have bank accounts are more likely to have unpredictable incomes, and recommends banks develop services to adapt to their needs.

“Bank products and services that enable households to better manage their account relationships and meet their financial needs when income is volatile may help these consumers open and sustain bank accounts and conduct a greater share of their financial transactions within the banking system,” the report says.

And some banks and credit unions are starting to offer services specifically tailored for people who don’t have traditional bank accounts.

Credit unions have also expanded their services to better meet the needs of populations who are often underserved by traditional banking institutions.

The Save to Win program, for instance, was created in Michigan in 2009 to encourage people to build savings habits by providing cash prize incentives, and is now available in 10 states, including Oregon, according to Lynn Heider, vice president of public relations and communications for the Northwest Credit Union Association. Members open a savings account and for every $25 deposit (up to 10 per month), they are entered into a monthly cash drawing.

Steve Pagenstecher, the vice president for member experience at Point West Credit Union in Portland, said Point West – which merged with the NAACP’s credit union in 1995 and Hacienda’s in 2004 – during the Great Recession launched a lending program for non-U.S. citizens to ensure they’d be able to access credit, including car loans. Often, immigrants come to the United States with no credit history at all, and the program offers them the opportunity build credit, making it easier to access home and car loans or apply for rental properties.

“We don’t talk about it as a separate program. We offer consumer lending at rates for all -- everything excluding real estate loans,” Pagenstecher told The Skanner. “Everything is open to noncitizens if they qualify.” Currently there are 783 non-citizen loans on Point West’s books, totaling $7.7 million, and the 30-day delinquency rate is zero, he said. The chargeoff ratio is less than 3 percent.

MasterCard, for instance, has created a Master Your Card program for unbanked and underbanked customers – including prepaid cards similar to debit cards, prepaid payroll cards for employers and financial education tools.

“What we don’t want is to have these households left behind,” said Nichole Francis, the director of U.S. government affairs for MasterCard.

Pagenstecher added that since the election, there’s been a lot of concern about what the election means for immigrants’ future. The credit union has released a statement about its value of inclusivity and economic empowerment regardless of gender, sexual identity, race or immigration status.

Immigrants are a “huge population that are actively contributing to the economy,” he added, and they should have as much access to credit as anyone else. Point West has also created a non-citizen lending tool kit for other credit unions around the country, and is helping create an incubator program to help credit unions better serve minorities.

“[Immigrants] should have access to credit, they absolutely should. It’s cool to see [financial institutions] taking up that mantle,” he said

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