Banks Invest $350 Million to Fight Crime in Nursing Homes and Get CRA Credit

Almost $350 million has been invested by 250 banks in 47 states to fund a program dedicated to fighting crime in nursing homes, reports Bloomberg.

With the investment, the Senior Housing Crime Prevention Foundation claims the banks will get a risk-free way to satisfy their Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) requirements.

According to the foundation’s website, it provides a coordinated set of components that work together to create a zero tolerance-to-crime platform in senior housing facilities.

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This includes personal lockboxes for the residents, cash rewards up to $1,000 paid anonymously for information about wrongdoing of any kind, and effective, on-going education and training for staff members and residents. The foundation says it has reduced all aspects of crime in participating facilities by 93% through December 31, 2011.

Some claim that the program lacks transparency and is a way for banks to circumvent the spirit of the law known as CRA, said Peter Skillern, executive director of the Community Reinvestment Coalition of North Carolina, a nonprofit advocacy group during an interview with Bloomberg.

“That is not in any way related to lending or investing in neighborhoods,” Skillern said in an interview. “This is an operation that allows banks to avoid substantive, meaningful CRA investment, and its operations lack transparency and accountability.”

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Written by John Yedinak