COVID 19 Payment Response Unit – Calling all Credit Unions

GIRT is in the process of getting a new credit union initiative underway to help with the COVID19 crisis.

Our first priority is to get money to those people who need it most as soon as possible.

The mywelfare system has been overloaded and the server went down on Tuesday leaving many people without a payment.

As unemployment soars past 18% many people are going to have to reinvent themselves or find additional forms of income.

https://www.independent.ie/irish-news/coronavirus-ireland-unemployment-to-hit-17pc-as-virus-wipes-out-decade-of-jobs-growth-39096160.html

Loans are being offered by most of the pillar banks but this will lead to significant debt in the future.

Our goal now is to ensure that the worst off are being looked after and are provided with the means to retrain for the future.

The Plan.

The plan in the short term is to provide something akin to the initiative in Iowa.

https://www.cubroadcast.com/episodes/2056-iowa-credit-union-foundation-emergency-relief-fund-raises-500000-for-iowans-affected-by-coronavirus-crisis#

We will provide the platform to allow to people to donate and allocate grant monies and look to the credit unions, being regulated by the CB, to administer payments.

In a nutshell the system would operate as follows:-

The CU would incorporate a C19 donate now button on their home page.

Anyone not just CU members can donate.

Clicking on this would bring take them to a page that we set up for more info and payment options.

In the donate options we will have the following:

  1. Donate to members encountering severe and immediate hardship.
  1. Provide sponsorship for those wishing to retrain.e.g. gain IT skills.
  1. Donate to care workers and volunteers and people assisting in the battle through other means .ie. producing PPE at home, delivering food, keeping essential services going etc.
  1. Assist local SME’s severely impacted by the crisis to keep going and find new markets and products.
  1. Other community projects.

Payment Types

Credit and debit cards can be accepted on the donate page.

Acquirers 

The CU’s act as the acquirers and have a C19 Fund set up specifically for this cause.

Applications 

Members would then apply for assistance under one of the above headings ( or indeed another category if required).

We would provide the application page with KYC and other requirements built in. If required we could use or on-line document upload system.

The member would log into the portal to get a status on the application and manage their account.

The credit union would process the payment to successful applicants via the fund.

Immediate Priority

The priority would be for CU members to be looked after in the first instance then broaden the scope after this.

Cost 

Our aim is to have a system that does not cost the credit union anything.

All you have to do is incorporate a COVID 19 assist button your homepage which would take people to the site where they donate or apply for assistance.