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爱人体How Abuses Led to the Decline of a Once Promising Credit Union

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AROUND June 7, 2016.

SHOWN TO THE RIGHT, ARE THE CONTENTS OF THE 11/27/12 LETTER SIGNED BY PRIORITY ONE CREDIT UNION PRESIDENT, CHARLES R. WIGGINGTON, SR. IN COMPLIANCE TO THE TERMS OF SETTLEMENT AGREED TO BY THE CREDIT UNION ANDA MEMBER WHO SUED THE CREDIT UNION, ALLEGING THEIR WILLFUL VIOLATION OF THE PRIVACY ACT.

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Sunday, April 17, 2016

Eluded by the Obvious

No Accommodations   
for the 
Blind.... Allegedly


There was a time Priority One Credit Union's tagline was, "You are Our First Priority" and for years, the credit union proved that members indeed were important, valued and respected. That of course all changed starting on January 1, 2007, when President Charles R. Wiggington, Sr. entered into a brutal campaign to try and erase all memory of the accomplishments, products and services created under his predecessor, William E. Harris. 

During the first two years of his appointment, the President divided his time splurging on purchasing what would prove to be a failed and expense phone system, on the hiring of a COO who would help him target, abuse and drive out imaginary enemy employees, and strolling throughout the main branch in South Pasadena, California, boasting about unevidenced accomplishments and his plans that would thrust the credit union into the forefront and above all other credit unions. 

In late 2009, he was overcome by a need to rewrite the credit union's mission statement and tagline. To assist in his efforts, he inducted the assistance of then COO, Beatrice Walker, and then Training and Education Manager, Robert West. The Training and Education Manager anxiously accepted the task of rewriting the mission statement and tagline, possibly gleeful over the fact that this would provide an opportunity to prove that he is a clever and accomplished writer versus one mired in frustration. 

Mr. West delivered a brand new mission statement which boasted that Priority One is a financial fitness center possessing the ability to help both members and employees "win with money."  The loss of more than $22 million during the years of 2007 through 2012 proved Priority One is no financial fitness center and the more than 5 year freeze on employee salaries proves that Priority One is quite incapable of helping anyone win with money. 

What few people knew is that in 2009, the mission statement and tagline became a real problem for the President and as some of his managers would reveal, he had admitted that due to the amount of complaints from members citing poor member service, he needed to amend the statement that members are Priority One's first priority. At his admittance, the credit union could no longer live up to the assurance to members that they are important and a priority. 


A NEW LAWSUIT

The President's Vivid Imagination
and
Rewriting History

Last year, one female and two male, legally blind people filed a lawsuit against the credit union alleging Priority One failed to provide accommodations for the visually impaired that would have facilitated access to one of the credit union's ATM's. 

Of course, President Wiggington could not refrain from telling some of his staff that the complaint was yet another attempt to extort money from the credit union, labeling it frivolous and declaring it would be quickly dismissed by the court. To keep things in context, the President is still reeling from the state's Superior Court decision disallowing the credit union's counter-lawsuit against its former external auditor, Turner, Warren, Hwang and Conrad. The rejection of the that complaint not only disgraced Priority One and it's insurance carrier and bond company, CUMIS Insurance Society, and thwarted recovering the $980,000 paid out by CUMIS against the credit union's claim filed after it was discovered more than $1 million in cash had been embezzled from the credit union's Los Angeles branch during the years of 2010 through 2012.

Nowadays, President Wiggington's record of contributions in bettering the credit union and the prospect of creating a memorable and positive legacy, lie in shambles. In the credit union's more than 80-year history, Priority One has never suffered the onslaught of lawsuits as it has under President Wiggington. 

The President's cries of frivolous lawsuits and his slandering of plaintiffs are always dispelled each time the credit union, through its attorneys, offer to settle the complaints outside of court. The fact that the lawsuits are actually scheduled for trial attests that the complaints possess veracity 

This is not the first time the President asserts a lawsuit is frivolous and describes the intent of a plaintiff as try and extort money from the troubled credit union. The President's most recent statements are just another futile effort to try to save face though we don't believe he has much face left to save. Past instances when he declared a frivolous lawsuit had been filed include:

Year: 2010
Plaintiff: Burbank Branch Manager
Complaint: Age and race discrimination
Resolution: The credit union voluntarily requested settlement negotiations

Year: 2011
Plaintiff: Business Development Represenative
Complaint: Harassment, retaliation, defamation of character, same-sex sexual harassment
Resolution: The credit union voluntarily requested settlement negotations

Year: 
Plaintiff: 
Complaint:
Resolution:

Year: 
Plaintiff: 
Complaint:
Resolution:

Year: 
Plaintiff: 
Complaint:
Resolution:

Year: 
Plaintiff: 
Complaint:
Resolution:

Year: 
Plaintiff: 
Complaint:
Resolution:

Year: 
Plaintiff: 
Complaint:
Resolution:


in cavalier and confided to some of his staff that the lawsuit was "frivolous" in nature and that Priority One's attorneys would be quick to diffuse and have the complaint dismissed by the court. This is what he also said in 2010, when the credit union received notice it was being sued by the former Burbank Branch Manager and he also said this in 2011, when the credit union was sued by a former business development representative and of course, he again said this in 2012, when the credit union was sued by a former FSR and the former Valencia Branch Manager and by a now former member. He also aid this in 2014 when the credit union was sued by a former automobile broker, Auto Alliance, and when it was again sued by its former external auditor, Turner, Warren, Hwang and Conrad. In almost every case, the lawsuits were settled though the lawsuit filed by the car broker will be tried later this year and as we reported last month, the lawsuit filed by the former external auditor has been voluntarily been by the auditor though with a clause allowing them to refile the lawsuit at some undisclosed time in the future. 

In January, the credit union filed a response to the allegedly frivolous lawsuit but the court has decided it poses sufficient merit to proceed to court. 







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