In the last Save our Bank newsletter over 400 members voted on the priorities for the Customer Union for Ethical Banking in 2018.
The results were analysed and the main conclusion drawn was that making sure the Co-op Bank’s Ethical Policy stays in place and its integrity is maintained is the number one priority for most supporters.
The top priority for the Union was to engage with the bank on any upcoming review of the Ethical Policy. The prospect of a new review of the Ethical Policy was raised in the bank’s last Values and Ethics report in the summer, but this might be delayed.
Another priority was developing dialogue with the bank’s current owners (the US hedge funds) to advocate that they return the bank to cooperative ownership as and when they sell their stake and campaigning for the bank to investigate options for returning to cooperative ownership and publish its findings.
Plans to create a share fund to build a cooperative shareholding in the bank, and to develop a structured relationship with the bank, were ranked lower. These priorities will be acted on and contact will be made with the biggest shareholders in the Co-op Bank as next steps.
90 new members have been welcomed to the Customer Union since the last newsletter. and it has just been awarded a small (£1,000) grant from Midcounties Cooperative to help it to engage with the wider co-operative movement to raise awareness of the Customer Union and be more effective in holding the bank to account on ethics and perusing a return to co-operative ownership.