Danielle Beavers on Charges of Discrimination at CFPB: Consumer financial protection is under attack by phony claims

Here, in The Hill. Beavers is director of diversity and inclusion at The Greenlining Institute. Excerpt:

Some critics—not previously known as leaders on diversity or civil rights—claim that the CFPB has become “a breeding ground” for discrimination that devalues employees of color and women.

As an advocate for diversity—and specifically as an advocate for communities of color—I have to call this out as the nonsense it is.

First, remember that predatory lending targeting communities of color played a huge role in creating the 2008 financial crisis. Congress created the CFPB—over the objections of banking industry lobbyists—precisely to keep such abuse from tanking the economy again.

And it’s working.

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The CFPB worked with the independent Office of Inspector General to investigate the workplace environment and conducted a series of employee townhalls to solicit feedback from its workers. CFPB also elevated its Office of Minority and Women Inclusion to report directly to Director Cordray.

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In a letter this month, a group of Democratic members led by Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif) cited these successful efforts and praised the CFPB’s efforts

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The CFPB had issues in this area and took strong steps to address them. As a result, when we analyzed racial diversity in eight financial agencies that have Offices of Minority and Women Inclusion, CFPB ranked third of eight. The bureau still has work to do, but it’s on the right track.

Complaints about diversity at the CFPB represent a smokescreen designed to distract from the real issue. * * *