Chelsea Groton Bank announced that its Confidence Builder Banking program was officially certified by the national Cities for Financial Empowerment Fund (CFE Fund) as meeting the Bank On National Account Standards (2021 – 2022). The national safe account standards, co-created by consumer advocates, leading national nonprofit organizations, civic leaders, and other financial institutions, designate both core and strongly recommended features that ensure low cost, high functionality, and consumer safety.
Key features of Confidence Builder Banking include no monthly cost if enrolled in direct deposit or eStatements, no overdraft or nonsufficient fund fees, the ability to pay bills and make purchases, access to a dedicated mentor who will teach the customer about banking and money management, and federal deposit insurance. Confidence Builder Banking is available at every Chelsea Groton Bank branch. The account can also be opened remotely, via the Chelsea LIVE Video Banking app.
“Chelsea Groton Bank has always been dedicated to ensuring we had a product and service offering that could meet the needs of all members of our community. In reviewing our product mix, we felt there was a need for an entry-level checking product for those who have never used a bank before,” shared Alex Masse, SVP, Director of Operations and Business Intelligence at Chelsea Groton Bank. “Without a checking account, families pay too much for basic financial transactions and are hard-pressed to build savings and assets. The criteria set forth by the national Bank On program aligned with what we had in mind for the product. Because Chelsea Groton has a focus on community education, our Confidence Builder Banking product also includes a financial mentor component so new customers can always feel they have someone to turn to with questions as they are embarking on their new financial journey.”
“The Cities for Financial Empowerment Fund is delighted to award its national Bank On account certification to Chelsea Groton Bank’s Confidence Builder Banking program,” said Jonathan Mintz, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Cities for Financial Empowerment Fund. “Confidence Builder offers residents of CT and RI who are looking to improve their finances a safe, affordable, and truly useful mainstream banking product– this is especially important during COVID-19, as consumers need to access and manage their money both affordably and safely. Chelsea Groton Bank’s offering of this terrific account brings them into the forefront of national banking access efforts, and we thank them.”
The goal of Bank On is to ensure that everyone has access to safe and affordable financial products and services. The Bank On National Account Standards identify critical product features for appropriate bank accounts, making it easier for local coalitions across the country to connect consumers to accounts that meet their needs.
With the addition of Confidence Builder Banking, accounts that meet Bank On National Account Standards are now available at over 39,000 branches in all 50 states and Washington, DC; financial institutions with Bank On certified accounts already comprise over 56% of the national deposit market share. In addition to Confidence Builder Banking, there are over 200 other Bank On certified accounts available at financial institutions across the country. Data collected by the CFE Fund in partnership with the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis through Bank On’s national reporting platform shows that these accounts are meeting consumers’ needs; since their offering, millions of consumers have opened Bank On certified accounts, with approximately 85% of them opened by consumers new to the financial institutions.
About the Cities for Financial Empowerment Fund (CFE Fund)
The CFE Fund supports municipal efforts to improve the financial stability of households by leveraging opportunities unique to local government. By translating cutting edge experience with large scale programs, research, and policy in cities of all sizes, the CFE Fund assists mayors and other local leaders to identify, develop, fund, implement, and research pilots and programs that help families build assets and make the most of their financial resources. The CFE Fund is currently working in over 100 cities and counties, and has disbursed over $59 million to local governments and their partners to support these efforts. For more information, please visit www.cfefund.org or follow us on Twitter at @CFEFund.
About Bank On
Bank On coalitions are locally-led partnerships between local public officials; city, state, and federal government agencies; financial institutions; and community organizations that work together to help improve the financial stability of unbanked and underbanked individuals and families in their communities. The Bank On national initiative builds on a grassroots movement of over 90 coalitions in cities across the country, offering national account standards, capacity grant support, pilot funding, and a learning community. In addition to connecting unbanked individuals to accounts, Bank On programs raise public awareness, target outreach to the unbanked, and expand access to financial education. Visit www.cfefund.org/bankon for more information, or follow the conversation on Twitter @CFEFund #BankOn.