The U.S. Conference of Mayors


WHEREAS, many working families have never learned to effectively manage their finances, with the result that they often experience problems related to major purchases, particularly those involving a home or a car; and

WHEREAS, because of their lack of understanding of the financial services industry and the need for personal financial management skills, many Americans have poor credit and are subject to unfair and abusive practices; and

WHEREAS, credit cards have become a financial safety net for the many Americans who live from paycheck to paycheck; and

WHEREAS, a greater commitment among all levels of government and the private sector is needed to promote financial education and literacy; and

WHEREAS, many lower-income working families do not have access to mainstream financial services and must often pay high costs for check-cashing and other financial services; and

WHEREAS, access to mainstream financial services and improved personal income, money management, and planning skills can put working families in a better position to accumulate and retain wealth, own homes, raise healthy families, educate their children, and invest in small businesses,

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that The United States Conference of Mayors urges that governments and the private sector make financial literacy education available to working families; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that this education cover areas such as basic banking, electronic banking, basic investments, debt management, predatory lending, and home mortgages, and be provided through adult education classes, community-based organizations, and other local programs; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that government and the private sector work together to make more bank branches and responsible banking products available to families and individuals who live in underserved communities; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that banking institutions be encouraged to establish accounts for everyone, starting at birth, by exempting low-income workers and other eligible individuals from some or all fees for checking or other accounts and by levying only reasonable charges for checks written on accounts that have insufficient funds.

2007 The U.S. Conference of Mayors
Tom Cochran, Executive Director
1620 Eye Street, NW, Washington, DC 20006
Tel. 202.293.7330 ~ Fax 202.293.2352