Black Houstonians using spending power to promote change

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Black Houstonians using spending power to promote change, Mayra Moreno reports. (KTRK)

For about five decades, Unity National Bank has sat quietly in the heart of Houston's Third Ward. It's the only bank in Texas owned by African Americans, and within the last week, the bank has seen some of its busiest days.

"Hello, welcome," said John Scroggins, bank CEO as he greeted everyone inside.

Scroggins says Unity has opened more than 300 new accounts since last Friday.

"Folks just started coming in and said hey we want to be here," he said.

He said it all started after last week's police shootings. One person after another started coming in and he noticed a trend: Houston's black community looking to give back and exert some sense of economic power.

Latricia Lewis, of Humble, and several other folks at the bank don't mind the wait.

"A change has to be done," said Lewis.

"A lot of time we don't know what to do we know there's power in money," said Toni Swiney.

Jeb Bashaw, CEO of a financial advising company, said he's seeing this trend more often. People are not only wanting to give back to their community, but they want to see their money work for them.

"To sit across the table just like this and have a conversation with somebody instead of punch 1 for this punch 3 for that," said Bashaw.

Bank CEO Scroggins said for years the bank has given back to the community, but many people never knew that. Now with all the new business recently, they have big plans and vow to put the money to good use.

"Of all the deposits we are taking in we are going to put them back in the community in form of small business loans," added Scroggins.

Related Topics:
financebanksblack lives mattermoneyHouston
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