Associate Director of Marketing and Communications
Mission Economic Development Agency (MEDA)
(415) 282-3334 ext. 152
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MEDA Director of Policy & Advocacy Norma Paz García to Testify Before U.S. Congress
Speaking on deleterious effects of a cashless economy for Latino immigrants in San Francisco’s Mission District
SAN FRANCISCO, Oct. 13, 2021 — The Mission Economic Development Agency (MEDA) has announced that Policy Counsel & Director of Advocacy Norma Paz García will testify before the United States Congress on Thursday, Oct. 14, at 9 a.m. (Pacific Time). The title of this U.S. House Committee on Financial Services hearing is “Cashed Out: How a Cashless Economy Impacts Disadvantaged Communities and Peoples.” (Read full testimony.)
Latinos nationwide remain unbanked at higher rates. Per 2017 FDIC data, 30% of low-income Latino households nationwide are unbanked, compared to 20% of all low-income households. An additional 30% of Latino households are underbanked — meaning they have a bank account, but still rely on alternative financial services such as check cashing — compared to 26% of all low-income households. A recent nationwide survey by Credit Sesame indicates that Latino families are less likely than white families to have a credit card, plus are more likely to report distrust of, or mistreatment by, crediting institutions.
García will outline the many reasons it makes sense to support a marketplace where all consumers can pay in cash, should that be their preference. She will also offer MEDA’s point of view of why, from an equity perspective, there is no greater reason than ensuring that the most marginalized and at-risk communities can participate in the economy that surrounds them — and that they feel they belong and are valued in their communities.
“Preserving cash as a payment option is an equity-forward imperative, easily implemented as it is already a common practice in our country’s marketplace,” said García. “While the idea of shifting away from cash to other forms of payment may be appealing to some, for many others a ‘cash ban’ seems unnecessary, confounding, inconvenient and risky. MEDA advocates for and creates conditions that advance inclusion and belonging, rather than exclusion.”
The event will be live streamed at https://financialservices.house.gov/live.
About Mission Economic Development Agency (MEDA)
Rooted in San Francisco’s Mission District, MEDA is advancing a national equity movement by building Latino prosperity, community ownership and civic power. We envision generations of Latino families choosing where to call home, thriving economically, succeeding in learning opportunities, and leading policy and social change toward a more equitable society.
Photo by Alejandro Barba on Unsplash.com.