September 18, 2013, 12:42 PM  |  Business

An Open Letter to The Board of Directors of Vancity

Dear Vancity Board Members,

This fall you face an important decision that will have a significant impact on the Downtown Eastside community. Your board will decide whether to continue financial support for the Carnegie Community Action Project (CCAP).

Since 2005 Vancity has provided more than $275,000 in funding to the CCAP. Two hundred and seventy-five thousand dollars is a lot of money that could potentially help a lot of people in this community. It is a great deal of money to grant to a political action group that has no board of directors and no outward accountability.

This year our community saw the “researchers” and leadership of the CCAP lead and support the pickets at Pidgin and Cuchillo restaurants. We witnessed the thugs they call friends threaten and bully our neighbors and attempt to put young entrepreneurs out of business. Their words and actions have encouraged radical elements in our community, promoted vandalism against local businesses, and undermined support for important initiatives.

We believe these activities do not comply with Vancity’s Ethical Policy. They undermine the good work Vancity does in Vancouver and seriously damage your brand.

Many of the CCAP supporters and protestors are from outside this neighbourhood. They are not interested in building a stronger local economy for the Downtown Eastside. They characterize the working taxpayers of the Downtown Eastside, and many Vancity members, as uncaring “rich people” who are to be constantly insulted and made to feel unwelcome in their own neighbourhood. “Eat the rich” and “burn the condos” the protestors say. We say enough of this destructive influence.

Your slogan “Make Good Money” promotes “doing good things in your community and the world”. Vancity believes that “when the place you live and work prospers, so do you”. These are lofty goals that should be followed up with firm action. Supporting a political action group that attempts to snuff-out new small businesses vital to the renewal of our streets is NOT good business.

We ask the board of Vancity to cease funding the Carnegie Community Action Project. We call on Vancity to “SPEND good money” and support organizations in the Downtown Eastside that promote local economic development and cooperation with all citizens.

Isn’t that what a good local credit union should do?

The Editors

The Gastown Gazette encourages all Vancity members and the general public to contact Vancity and request that they stop funding the CCAP. Let Vancity know – “the CCAP is not for me”.

Contact Vancity by phone: 604-877-7000 or 1-888-Vancity (826-2489)

Contact the Vancity Board of Directors by email:

Contact the Vancity Board of Directors via Vancity’s online comment form:

Contact the Vancity Board of Directors by mail:

PO Box 2120
Station Terminal
Vancouver BC V6B 5R8

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