Washington, D.C. — Today, the Center for American Progress released a new issue brief illustrating the importance of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, or CFPB, in defending consumers against predatory practices. The Trump administration and Republican leaders in Congress continue to promote efforts to either eliminate the agency or change its structure, funding, or operations in ways that would greatly weaken its effectiveness.
In its five-year history, the CFPB has returned nearly $12 billion to 29 million victims of financial wrongdoing across the country. Its fair lending enforcement actions alone have rooted out discriminatory practices affecting approximately 1 million borrowers of color in products including mortgages, auto loans, and credit cards. Meanwhile, by writing stronger rules of the road for prepaid cards and payday loans, the CFPB continues to address abuses in high-cost financial products more commonly found in communities of color.
“In the wake of the financial crisis, Congress said ‘never again’ to predatory financial practices that threaten families’ well-being when it created the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau,” said Joe Valenti, Director of Consumer Finance at CAP and co-author of the brief. “Policymakers may have amnesia about the crisis and its devastating effects on communities of color, but they must recognize that without an independent watchdog holding bad actors accountable, these communities will only be victimized again.”
“The CFPB plays a critical role in protecting vulnerable communities against discriminatory financial practices that contribute to the growing racial wealth divide in this country,” said Danyelle Solomon, Director of Progress 2050 at CAP and co-author of the brief. In light of both historical practices that prevented people of color from fully engaging in the financial system and ongoing disparities in banking and lending practices, the CFPB must remain in place to ensure that communities of color are protected.”
Click here to read “Communities of Color Cannot Afford a Weakened CFPB” by Joe Valenti and Danyelle Solomon.
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