As we all know, the last several months have been utterly unprecedented. So much has changed since the beginning of the year. Every single one of us has had our lives completely rearranged and redefined by the COVID-19 pandemic and SF Fire Credit Union is no exception.
It is with a heavy heart that I am announcing a reduction in the size of our staff by 46 employees. This is a measure we wished to avoid, but a necessary and proactive decision to ensure the long-term soundness and viability of the credit union. This weighed heavily on all of us that take pride in our credit union’s culture of teamwork and collaboration.
There are several reasons for this decision.
As you know, the economy has dramatically shifted over the past several months. Economic forecasts, and the credit union’s plans and projections for 2020 have proven to be wrong. Interest rates have fallen, swiftly and drastically. Spending habits have changed. Demand for new products and services has severely slowed, as members financially “shelter-in-place” during the pandemic and the challenging economy it has brought with it.
The increases in staffing which were made in the past few years were an integral component of our plans and expectations for continued growth over the next few years, as well as a stable economy. In navigating the current and future economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, there is no shortcut to the growth we would need to maintain our current staffing levels while ensuring the credit union’s long term financial health.
We are doing everything we can to support those who are leaving.
Supporting our departing employees through this transition is our highest priority. Each will receive a severance package based on their years of service with SF Fire Credit Union.
Our credit union is financially safe and sound.
We remain well capitalized, with a net worth ratio of 8.6%. These difficult yet proactive measures are necessary, to preserve our strength and ability to navigate through the short and long economic impacts of the pandemic.
This is a difficult time for all of us.
This crisis has been a time of deep reflection for me, and the entirety of our credit union’s leadership. These changes are painful personally and professionally. We will continue to adapt. We are proud to serve you and our community. We will get through this together.
President and CEO