U.S. Sens. Tina Smith & Ben Sasse’s Bipartisan Bill to Improve Credit Union Employee & Member Safety Signed Into Law

WASHINGTON [3.16.22] – U.S. Senators Tina Smith (D-Minn.) and Ben Sasse (R-Neb.) announced that their bipartisan legislation to make credit unions safer for employees and members has been signed into law. The Credit Union Employee and Member Safety Act would simplify the expulsion process for credit union members who harass or assault credit union employees, steal from a credit union, or engage in other major violations of credit union rules.      

“It’s unacceptable that Minnesota credit union employees have had to endure harassment, theft, or violence by members,” said Sen. Smith. “Right now, expelling members who seek to harm credit unions and their employees is a time consuming and burdensome process, leaving staff, members and the credit union itself at risk of further harm. I’m proud of our work to pass this legislation and ensure burdensome procedures no longer stand in the way of members’ safety.”

“This is common sense,” said Sen. Sasse. “Credit Unions provide important services to Nebraskans, and we needed this update so that credit union employees can carry out their work unimpeded and members have confidence in their safety.”

“The Credit Union Employee and Member Safety Act is a culmination of strong, bipartisan work to help ensure the safety of credit union members and staff,” said Mark Cummins, President & CEO of the Minnesota Credit Union Network. “Senator Smith deserves the appreciation of every credit union, both in Minnesota and across the country, for her leadership in making credit union security a priority.”

Minnesota credit unions have shared stories of members who have robbed credit unions, smashed ATMs, and sexually harassed tellers. Despite this unacceptable behavior, it can be difficult for credit unions to expel these members. That is because longstanding federal law required credit union to call a vote of the credit union’s full membership to expel a member, even when the member has been in engaged in egregious conduct.

Sens. Smith and Sasse’s bill would fix this problem by allowing federal credit unions to expel members for violations of credit union policies without requiring a vote of membership. The bill is based on bipartisan legislation that was passed unanimously by the Minnesota legislature several years ago. The new law will apply the Minnesota legislation to federally chartered credit unions.

You can access bill text here