MADISON, Wis. (10/6/08)--Credit unions can expect more notice of their safety, soundness and security as more leagues and credit unions complete another round of media efforts. The Pennsylvania Credit Union Association board (PCUA) Friday approved an emergency ad campaign to spread a message of credit union safety throughout Pennsylvania on behalf of credit unions (Life is a Highway Oct. 3). "The special radio campaign will provide intense ad messages telling consumers that credit unions are safe and sound; National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) share insurance coverage is backed by the full faith of the U.S. Government--the same as the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC); and that non-credit union members can visit iBelong.org to find a credit union right for them," said PCUA. The Minnesota Credit Union Network (MnCUN) also worked the past week to keep everyone abreast of the developments in the economy and their affect on credit unions. "Through radio advertisements, e-mails and online resources, MnCUN is impressing upon the state that credit unions are safe and secure during turbulent economic times," said MnCUN. A two-week radio flight to educate consumers will air on major stations throughout the state and will be available to credit unions to customize and air on local radio. (Use the link to hear the ad). The league also has state newspapers and television outlets, encouraging them to include credit unions in their stories about deposit safety. MnCUN President/CEO Mark Cummins has discussed credit union insurance and security on Minnesota Public Radio and the Minnesota News Network. Uncertain times call for "us to be communicating that credit unions are a safe haven for member deposits," said Cummins. "We are doing all we can to emphasize how credit unions operate differently than other financial institutions, which has lead to the continued strength and stability of credit unions." Meanwhile, credit unions in North Carolina were successful in their media contacts. Truliant FCU, Winston-Salem, N.C., told Carolina News 14 that it experienced a 22% increase in mortgages. The credit union did no subprime lending. “Our focus is making sure our members are well-educated and make sure they can afford the mortgage they’re signing up for,” said Joseph Whitaker, Truliant FCU chief operating officer. Marcus Schaefer, Truliant FCU CEO, told Fox 8 WGHP-TV about the credit union’s prudent lending standards. “We haven’t absorbed any losses from subprime lending--we don’t do subprime lending,” he said. “And so we should be able to pay better rates on savings and low rates on loans.” Joe Mecca, Coastal FCU’s director of community and corporate relations, told the Raleigh News & Observer: “We have seen some pretty strong growth this year.” Coastal Federal has added 13,600 members this year, an 8.5% increase, Mecca told the Observer. It also has seen a nearly 60% increase in new checking accounts; loans are up 20%, the newspaper said (Sept. 28). For more information and to hear the reports, use the links.