Barriers to Banking

Bank On Washington

2020 FORUM:  Financial Resilience, Hope, Connections and Action

The Bank On Washington Forum (BOWA Forum) is an annual gathering of public, private, and nonprofit community professionals working to advance inclusive banking, including K-12 educators and librarians.

In 2020 the Forum will be a virtual event.

The Bank On Washington is dedicated to helping improve the financial stability of the unbanked and underbanked residents of our community by connecting them to safe and affordable mainstream accounts in banks and credit unions, raising public awareness of these efforts and opportunities, and otherwise expanding access to financial education and other financial empowerment opportunities.

Collectively, we have the power to address economic inequality through policies, products, and practices. Together, we can address the ways economic systems limit people’s individual choices.

Convened by the Financial Empowerment Network, the BOWA Forum 2020 will be organized around financial resilience, hope, connections, and action.

  • A Historical Look at Financial Exclusion in America
  • The Money Mindset
  • Opportunities and Benefits for Financial Inclusion

This event is for community professionals committed to advancing inclusive banking. Register here.

Bank On Washington Film Fest

In cooperation with The Financial Education Public-Private Partnership (FEPPP)Jump$tart Washington and the Financial Empowerment Network, students (filmmakers) were invited to produce a short film on financial inclusion that focuses on the barriers and solutions to being unbanked in Washington state.

  • Issaquah High School DECA – Watch here>
  • Heritage University – Watch here>
  • East Valley School District (Group 1) Spokane – Watch here>

ChexSystems Reports

If you have been denied an account from a bank or credit union, and ChexSystems was part of the decision process, this information will help you understand what may have contributed to that decision.

Chex Systems, Inc. provides account verification services to its financial institution members to aid them in identifying account applicants who may have a history of account mishandling (for example, people whose accounts were overdrawn and then closed by them or their bank). Each report submitted to ChexSystems remains on file for five years. You can order a report to learn what information is in your consumer file at ChexSystems.  Learn more> 

Consider contacting a financial counselor to review your ChexSystems report with you.

Financial Education Providers offer one-on-one financial education, free classes, and workshops to help you learn about managing your finances.  You can find a schedule of upcoming classes and workshops offered on the Financial Education Calendar.

Financial Counseling

  • AFCPE (Association for Counseling and Planning Education)
    Find an AFC (Accredited Financial Counselor) in Washington here>
  • American Financial Solutions
    Learn more>
  • United Way Benefits Hub
    Online scheduling for appointments at five convenient locations.  Schedule an appointment here>
    If you can’t find available times call 206-461-4536 or email  Learn more>
  • El Centro de la Raza
    Call 206-957-4634 or email
    Learn more>
  • Hopelink Financial Capability Program
  • NW Access Fund – Financial Coaching and Benefits Planning for Individuals with Disabilities
    Call 206-328-5116
    Learn more>
  • Solid Ground – Financial Fitness Boot Camp
    Learn more>
  • Sound Outreach 
    Learn more>
  • YWCA Economic Resilience Initiative
    Learn more>

Answers about Identification
The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency provides answers and solutions for questions about identification methods used by banks, use of social security numbers, and fingerprints.  Learn more>