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WASHINGTON — As part of its Go Direct campaign that encourages switching Social Security benefits from paper checks to direct deposit, the Department of Treasury has recognized three credit unions for their efforts.

The three winning credit unions are Cooperativa de Ahorro y Credito Roosevelt Roads, in Puerto Rico, Interstate Unlimited CU in Jesup, Ga., and Century Heritage FCU in Pittsburgh. This is the second time Treasury recognized Interstate Unlimited CU, which received the honor in 2007. In all, 12 financial institutions were paid tribute at a July 14 ceremony in Washington.

Launched in 2005, Go Direct (www.GoDirect.org) is a national campaign sponsored by Treasury and the Federal Reserve Banks that partner with financial institutions and other organizations to encourage federal benefit recipients to use direct deposit. A total of 145 financial institutions representing more than 27,000 branches nationwide participated in the Go Direct Financial Institution Champions program; Treasury tracked their percentage increases in Social Security and Supplemental Security Income ACH payments over an eight-month period ending May 31, 2008. Participating banks and credit unions were grouped into four tiers according to size, and the top three performers in each of the tiers were recognized. More than 800 financial institutions including 418 credit unions participate.

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