Congressman Serrano Blasts Trump Administration’s Efforts to Allow ‘Redlining’ and Limit Financial Access in Neighborhoods Like the Bronx
Washington, DC – US Congressman José E. Serrano, longtime member and former Ranking Member of the House Appropriations Financial Services Subcommittee today blasted reports that the Trump Administration will undermine longtime rules regarding the Community Reinvestment Act, which helps prevent financial institutions from discriminating against residents in minority, poor communities through ‘redlining’, and old practice through which banks and other institutions would refuse to lend money in specific neighborhoods, regardless of an individual’s financial status and credit score. He released the following statement:
“Redlining is a discriminatory practice that needs to remain in the past. These reports are so troubling because they threaten to revive the decades of government sanctioned discrimination and disinvestment from places like the Bronx. Access to financial services and capital are key to people’s capacity to escape poverty, accumulate wealth, and to promote the economic growth of areas like the Bronx. That is why over the years I quadrupled funding for initiatives like the CDFI Program, which helps expand access to capital and consumer friendly financial services in underserved neighborhoods. The work of CDFI institutions have been life changing for many people, businesses, and families over the years. We should be doing more to expand banking in these neighborhoods, not putting more unfair obstacles on an individual’s capacity to improve their livelihood. Someone’s ability to qualify for a loan shouldn’t be determined by their zip code and race, it should be determined by their financial record and credit score – as it is in every other case. Unfortunately, given the Trump Administration’s efforts to eliminate programs expanding financial access to businesses and individuals residing in areas hurt by decades of discriminatory banking practices, including the effective CDFI program, these reports come as no surprise,” said Congressman Serrano.