Bank On Memphis to help residents acquire bank accounts - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Bank On Memphis to help residents acquire bank accounts

By Jamel Major - bio | email

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - Memphis Mayor A C Wharton is trying to connect the 45,000 Shelby County families who do not have bank accounts with banks.

The effort by the City of Memphis aims to help residents acquire bank and credit union accounts instead of using payday lenders, car title lenders and check cashers.

"We believe that money saved in the process will help them avoid those costly predatory lenders," said Linda Williams with the RISE Foundation of Memphis.

Wharton said the Bank On Memphis Program will help attract people who do not have accounts or a relationship with a bank or credit union.

"The key is to ensure that there are choices and that our citizens are informed," said Wharton. "This is what this is about."

According to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation in Memphis and Shelby County, about 96,000 households do not use a regular financial institution.

Local banks and credit unions taking part in the program will reduce the minimum opening deposits for Bank On customers. They will also be offered accounts with no minimum monthly balance requirement.

Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell said it is another way for people to understand how important the banking system is and how it can help them build wealth.

"At a very early age in our public school system, I was introduced to the value of savings and managing money," said Luttrell. "So many people going up today don't have that advantage."

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