COVID-19 is forcing many local banks and credit unions to close their lobbies, with only electronic banking services available.
President and CEO of Atomic Credit Union, Thomas D. Griffiths announced today that all Atomic Credit Union locations will be closing their doors to customers during the pandemic. Atomic Credit Union serves 15 locations in Southern Ohio including those in Portsmouth, Minford, Lucasville, and Wheelersburg and out-of-county locations in Athens, Chillicothe, Logan, Piketon, Waverly, Wellston, Beaver, Jackson, and Oak Hill.
“As a follow-up to my original coronavirus (COVID-19) communication, circumstances have rapidly evolved to require further bold actions be taken to meet the directives ordered by Governor (Mike) DeWine as recently as yesterday afternoon,” Griffiths stated. “With the growing list of business industries in Ohio being forced to shutter their operations, along with employer-mandated expectations such as social distancing, we find it necessary to adjust our operations to help protect the health and safety of our members, our employees, and the communities we serve in general. Although the credit union’s branch service capabilities are being somewhat limited, as I will discuss in more detail later, it is very reassuring to hear from the Governor’s task force on coronavirus that they do not have any intention of closing banks or credit unions in Ohio! However, they do report that it may only be feasible to remain open through limited services such as drive-thru, ATM access, call centers, and on-line banking. The Governor has repeatedly emphasized the need to keep open the financial institutions, grocery stores, and healthcare-related facilities, if and when, a mass quarantine is issued in Ohio.”
Though remaining open, Griffiths announced that Atomic Credit Union will be expanding social distancing efforts by temporarily closing all walk-in lobbies and limiting drive-thru, night drops and ATM services. All face-to-face needs must be addressed by making an appointment.
“During this transition, we will have a personal greeter at each location entrance to provide guidance on how you can complete your financial transactions. We truly apologize for any inconvenience this may cause, but please realize we are doing this for the sake of protecting our members, employees, their family members, and the community-at-large. It is up to all of us to come together and make the necessary sacrifices needed to safely move beyond these unprecedented times.”
The Atomic CEO further stated that the company will be increasing call center workers to assist bankers distantly. They will also be contacting lenders about how this pandemic will affect their loans.
“We will be reaching out directly to our members that are in the process of a mortgage loan and provide them with updates regarding the status of their loans and how the closure of local courthouses may affect the mortgage lending process,” Griffiths stated. “Some economists are predicting unemployment may surge to 20% during this period. I wish to assure our loan members that the Atomic Credit Union will do the right thing by you! We will continue to do the credit union thing – help people! As I said previously, our call center is fully staffed and ready to assist members in good times and bad times. The most important piece of advice I can give to anyone during bad times is to keep the line of communication open! We want to help you! We will be utilizing all tools, such as, loan extensions, modifications, consolidations, etc. to help get you through this unprecedented time.”
Desco Federal Credit Union announced today that they will remain open; however, they are encouraging local banks to use mobile, online and telephone banking services until COVID-19 pandemic subsides.