SAN FRANCISCO, November 6, 2019 – Groups, Business Owners Suing CFPB for Illegally Halting Progress on Lending Protections Speak Out Against Forum Stacked With Financial Institution Reps

Washington, D.C.— In the face of a federal lawsuit, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is scrambling to manufacture support for its failure to help protect small businesses from discriminatory lenders by holding a public forum to discuss small business lending that is stacked with anti-regulation activists and industry representatives. The agency is being sued by Democracy Forward on behalf of two small business owners from Waterloo, Iowa and Portland, Oregon, the National Association for Latino Community Asset Builders (NALCAB), California Reinvestment Coalition (CRC) for illegally delaying the implementation of a federal law that requires the CFPB to collect and disclose data from financial institutions on discriminatory lending practices.  The data is critical for enforcing fair lending laws as well as identifying and addressing the barriers small businesses face in accessing credit.

The November 6th symposium comes years after the CFPB began the process to implement Section 1071 of the Dodd-Frank Act. As early as December 2012, the CFPB was “gathering information from stakeholders to better understand the relevant business lending markets, and to determine what data are available and how best to collect those data.” Yet, in 2018, the Trump administration unlawfully halted this progress.

Ahead of the symposium, the plaintiffs issue the following statement on the administration’s belated attempt to restart this process by favoring representatives of the Heritage Foundation, CATO Institute, and the financial services industry over the communities Section 1071 was designed to protect:

“ This symposium is the Trump administration’s weak attempt to justify its failure to protect small businesses owned by women and people of color from discriminatory lending.”