SOURCE: National Cooperative Business Association
WASHINGTON, DC--(Marketwire - May 3, 2012) - One hundred fifty cooperative leaders from all sectors of the economy and corners of the nation will meet with top policymakers at the White House on May 4 to discuss how their organizations spur economic recovery through job creation and ongoing investments in their local communities.
"Every day cooperatives around the U.S. are stimulating the economy and we are pleased to have the opportunity to discuss our successes in job creation and ways to use the cooperative model to continue to strengthen communities large and small," said Liz Bailey, interim president and chief executive officer of the National Cooperative Business Association. "Two million jobs are generated each year as a direct result of cooperatives, which illustrates the incredible impact that these organizations have on local economies."
The event will begin with a briefing by senior Obama Administration officials followed by breakout sessions where cooperative leaders will meet with members of the Administration to discuss small business development, job creation, innovative agriculture programs and financial cooperatives.
Administration officials will hear a number of cooperative success stories including:
- Hope Federal Credit Union, which was organized in 1995 by the members of Anderson United Methodist Church in Jackson, Mississippi, to foster asset development and self-empowerment among low-income residents and to provide an alternative to predatory lenders. The credit union has evolved from a small church project to an organization with 16 branches in four states offering a full array of financial services as well as education and counseling services to traditionally unbanked and under-banked residents in the nation's most impoverished region.
- Cooperative Care and Home Care Associates, which are worker cooperatives that offer quality in-home care for the elderly, disabled and mentally ill in urban and rural settings. With worker cooperatives, employees participate in the overall management of the organization, which produces high-quality employees who take pride in the organization. The innovative model also reduces employee turnover rates (which can be as high as 50 percent in the industry) and helps move individuals into high paying jobs.
- ROC (Resident-owned Communities) USA, which helps owners of manufactured and mobile homes cooperatively purchase the land beneath their structures, helping to preserve affordable housing for people living on a low or moderate income and enabling them to build wealth. About 17 million Americans live in manufactured homes however many mobile home parks are closing causing low-income homeowners to be displaced. ROC USA is working to ensure that a major sector of affordable housing remains available for these individuals.
There are currently 29,000 cooperative businesses nationwide spanning most industries, including agriculture, energy, financial service and credit unions, food distribution, healthcare, housing, retail and telecommunications. U.S. cooperatives account for more than $3 trillion in assets, over $500 billion in total revenue and $25 billion in wages and benefits.
The White House Community Leaders Briefing is a weekly program that provides a unique opportunity for community leaders to have a dialogue with the White House about issues that are affecting their communities as well as to ensure that they are well informed about government policies and programs and how they can use or maximize these resources.
ABOUT NCBA (www.ncba.coop)
National Cooperative Business Association (NCBA) is the national association for cooperative businesses providing cross-sector education, support and advocacy to help start and grow co-ops across a variety of sectors, including agriculture, childcare, energy, financial service and credit unions, food distribution, healthcare, housing, retail and telecommunications. For nearly 100 years, our mission has been to develop, advance and protect cooperative businesses demonstrating that cooperatives are a better business model for advancing economic and social impact. For 50 years, we have supported cooperative development globally through our CLUSA International Program.
About the International Year of Cooperatives (www.usa2012.coop)
2012 was named the International Year of Cooperatives by the United Nations. A yearlong celebration of the co-op business model and its positive economic impact across the globe, reminding us that it is possible to pursue both economic viability and social responsibility.