INCREASING ACCESS TO FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS IN LATINO COMMUNITIES

Updated: Aug 12, 2019

Based on the work of other Appleseed Centers, this project links banking institutions with members of the growing Latino population to increase access to financial institutions.


Legal Partners:

Adams and Reese

Baker Donelson

Skadden Arps


Community Partners:

Catholic Charities

Hispanic Apostolate

Credit Bureau of Baton Rouge

Baton Rouge Area Foundation

Greater New Orleans Foundation

Puentes New Orleans



Latino immigrants are statistically much less likely to have bank accounts than the remainder of the population and therefore often pay exorbitant fees to cash checks and send remittances, must sometimes resort to predatory lending services, are unable to build assets and credit histories and have recently become easy targets for robbery. In 2009, Louisiana Appleseed released a LA Appleseed Immigrant Banking Report and conducted financial education programs aimed at increasing Latino access to financial institutions. The report highlights the economic importance of immigrants both locally and nationally and provides specific recommendations to financial institutions for increasing immigrant access to their services. Appleseed has used this report as a tool to advocate for the increased financial service and product options available through mainstream financial institutions for the Latino population. The project also provides financial institutions with guidance on regulatory issues pertaining to the implementation of these programs. In 2011, Louisiana Appleseed, in partnership with the Southeast Louisiana Alliance for Economic Inclusion (AEI), published “Find Your Financial Future: Louisiana Banks and Credit Unions.” Part of our Financial Access initiative, this statewide directory is a guide for consumers to learn more about Louisiana banks’ and credit unions’ offerings, especially free and low-cost services geared towards the unbanked and under-banked.

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Louisiana Appleseed is dedicated to solving our state’s toughest problems at the root cause. Louisiana Appleseed is part of a national network of 17 public interest law centers across North America.

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