Industry Letter

Assistance for the Victims of Hurricane Katrina

September 2, 2005

To The Chief Executive Officer of the Institution Addressed:

In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, many of us are seeking a way to make donations to help with the clean up and rebuilding of the devastated GulfCoast. We at the Banking Department hope that you will give serious consideration to the following.

Banks and credit unions are in an excellent position to provide a safe and secure means to gather donations and transmit them directly to appropriate, legitimate charities. There are a number of ways to accomplish this.

These include:

  • Programming ATMs to allow customers to click to automatically donate a predetermined amount from their accounts;
  • Developing informational screens and pop ups for ATM displays;
  • Providing links from online banking sites to allow customers to donate directly to a range of charities;
  • Placing literature in branches advising consumers about how to donate safely to legitimate charities; and
  • Using informational inserts in statements or bills to educate consumers on the different ways that they can help with the recovery.

Finally, institutions are also reminded of the broad financial repercussions likely to be felt by those employed by businesses in the area, small and large alike. The Banking Department encourages banks to participate in and support efforts to assist these families, and in the course of the Department’s overall evaluation of a bank’s compliance with CRA, will look favorably on an institution’s voluntary commitment to this effort.

Thank you for your attention to this matter.

Very truly yours,


Diana L. Taylor
Superintendent of Banks