New Year, New Opportunities to Advance Financial Security
As a collaborative, we recognize the importance of leveraging our joint resources for a greater impact. As we plan for the 2017 legislative session and outline our priorities, there is a lot of uncertainty with the federal administration and so our continued work in Massachusetts will be vital to empowering and protecting those we serve. We want to expand our advocacy network with those looking to do more.
Join us on Thursday, February 23rd at our office to learn more about our policy priorities, create awareness, generate engagement, encourage action and sustain a movement of economic justice. RSVP to Ginger@MassAssets.org today as we want to ensure an economy where individuals and families thrive.
On Tuesday, December 13, 2016, the Midas Collaborative convened members, partners and allies from across the state for a collaborative session to discuss goals and strategies to ensure a stronger financial future for Massachusetts residents. Thank you to those who attended, your insight was valuable as we determine next steps to address economic injustice in this new political climate. Next steps include a policy roundtable in February 2017, a town hall meeting in June 2017, and much more. This is just the first step in hopefully many to ensure Massachusetts is a leader in economic justice.
"There's a good chance that no one ever formally taught you how to deal with your finances. Whether it be via television, or word-of-mouth, parental guidance, or the Internet, financial education is patchy at best.
Back in 2012, we held a roundtable on financial literacy... and the lack thereof. Then Undersecretary of the Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation, Barbara Anthony, had just surveyed 400 Massachusetts consumers to find out how much people actually know about their finances. And as Anthony told us, there were some significant gaps.
As of 2016, the Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation no longer does this survey."
Pam Hoffman, executive director of the Midas Collaborative, calls state Sen. Jamie Eldridge her group's "first stop" when looking for a legislative advocate for low-income families.
"He gets it. He's a fabulous listener, always thinking about his constituents, and he's been that way since Day One," said Hoffman, whose group honored Eldridge with its 2016 Assets and Opportunity Champion award Tuesday night.
Midas' strategic advisor Margaret Miley discussed with Senator Jamie Eldridge on how the government should rethink home ownership incentives, the legacy of racial inequity policies, and asset development for working families. Check out the first episode of The Eldridge Files podcast.
Thank you to everyone who joined us for The Midas Collaborative’s Assets and Opportunity Reception
Our annual event is a celebration of the successes of our member collaborative from the past year and recognition of champions within our field including the 2016 Assets & Opportunity Champion Senator Jamie Eldridge. We were proud to share this moment with friends, member and partner organizations, and supporters. A recurring theme of the night was collaboration and we look forward to strengthening and expanding our network for a stronger financial future for Massachusetts residents.
Thank you to our sponsors for their continued support in advancing the financial security of low and moderate income individuals and families.
- NationStar Mortgage
- John Hancock
- Patricia W. & Alfred E. Farah Charitable Gift Fund
- Cambridge Savings Bank
- United Way Massachusetts Bay and Merrimack Valley
- Robert & Susan Glovsky
- Andy and Suzanne Cherenson
- Center for Responsible Lending
- East Boston Savings Bank
- Lawrence CommunityWorks
- Pam and Peter Hoffman
- The Miley Family
- United Way Pioneer Valley
- Metro Credit Union
Check out photos from the event and the video below highlighting our work and impact.
Boston – September 6, 2016 – The Midas Collaborative’s Board of Directors announced today that it has selected Pam Hoffman as the organization’s new executive director. Hoffman brings to the role more than 20 years of leadership in the corporate, nonprofit and municipal sectors. Founding executive director Margaret Miley will assume the position of strategic advisor.
The Midas Collaborative thanks Attorney General Maura Healey for her continued support of Midas and the Family Financial Protection Act (FFPA), which passed in the Massachusetts Senate in early July. On July 18th with WGBH News, the AG responded to caller, Midas' Margaret Miley, about the importance of FFPA in protecting Massachusetts families with a fair and transparent debt repayment system. The bill is currently in the House Ways and Means committee, with advocates including the AG, pushing for release to the House for a vote before the end of the session. Check out the WGBH interview (starting at minute 11:46) about FFPA and Midas' work.
In response to the Massachusetts Senate passing the Family Financial Protection Act, community advocates issued the following statement:
“We applaud the leadership of the Senate, especially lead sponsor Senator Jamie Eldridge, in passing the Family Financial Protection Act (S146) by a vote of 29-9. Abuses in the debt collection process are widespread. 23 percent of Massachusetts residents have debts in collection, with an average debt of $4,600. Massachusetts residents deserve a fair and transparent process to repay their debts, which the current system doesn’t allow. The current system allows out-of-state debt buyers to file large numbers of debt collection cases, straining our local court system, often in pursuit of debts that may not be collectible because they are too old, or may not be fully accurate. Residents are trapped by exorbitant fees, wage garnishment, and/or arrest warrants during this process, often leaving them in financial ruin."
Read the full statement here.
Check out our recent report: Massachusetts’ Debt Trap: How private debt buyers are using the courts to hurt families by Ginger Haggerty (June 2016)