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HSBC dropping some local non-profit business

HSBC has given notice to at least two Cranbrook non-profits that they should find new banks. In a letter to the CUPW Local 728 signed by HSBC's head of business banking Nigel Davis, the bank said that upon conducting a "strategic review" of personal banking services, it would be closing the accounts.

"As a result of the review, we have made the difficult decision to end our banking relationship with your business," Davis wrote. The letter is dated as January 6, 2014 and notes that on March 14, all business accounts associated with CUPW 728 would be closed.

“I was shocked, really shocked,” said Karen Panchuk, president of CUPW Local 728, about receiving the letter. “When I got the letter and started reading it I was holy cow, it’s the first time in my history either personal or business of ever knowing of a bank that would get rid of a customer, other than if you doing criminal activities.”

Panchuk said it was quite the contrary and the union was a model customer. She said she just wanted to know why the bank had gone in that direction and so wrote a letter to Nigel Davis at HSBC asking what the reasoning behind the decision was. So far, she said she has only received a very generic email noting that someone would be contacting her.

The Townsman reached out to HSBC for a comment on Friday, but as of press time had not heard from the company. On Thursday, Davis told the CBC that the move is about restructuring resources.

“Going forward we will focus our resources on those customer who are making the most of their relationship with HSBC, either because they are now or aspire to become international businesses, benefiting from our global footprint and connectivity,” Davis wrote to the CBC.

The local CUPW has been banking with HSBC since 2006.

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