There are a number of alternative banks in the New Haven area, and throughout Connecticut. They come in two forms:
(1) The credit union, which is a not-for-profit cooperative (you join and become a member, rather than opening an account);
(2) The Community Development Bank, that is, a bank certified as a Community Development Financial Institution, which has a mission to promote economic development by providing financial products and services to people and communities underserved by traditional financial institutions, particularly in low income communities.
There is only one Community Development Bank in the area (in fact, there are only 100 in the U.S.): Start Community Bank, which unfortunately has only one branch, on Whalley Avenue in New Haven. I have an account there.
There are numerous local credit unions in the New Haven area, listed below (please let me know if I left any out). For credit unions elsewhere in the state, click here.
CT Federal Credit Union, North Haven
Connex CU, North Haven, Guilford, Meriden, Orange
East Haven Municipal Employees CU, East Haven
First CT CU, Wallingford
Healthcare Financial Federal CU, New Haven & Bridgeport
McKesson FCU, Stratford, Derby, Milford
Members First FCU, Meriden & Wallingford
Meriden Postal Employees FCU
New Haven County CU, North Haven
New Haven Firefighters CU
New Haven Police FCU
New Haven Teachers FCU
Regional Water Authority Employees CU, New Haven
Science Park FCU, New Haven
Sikorsky Financial CU, Stratford, Milford, Seymour et al
State Police CU, Meriden
Wepawaug-Flagg FCU, Hamden