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Charlene Crowell
Supreme Court Decision Jeopardizes CFPB’s Future and its Independence
July 9, 2020
A June 29 U.S. Supreme Court split decision represents a major setback to both the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and the consumers who have come to rely upon the agency. Since 2010, more than 25 million consumers were helped by the agency’s efforts that returned over $11 billion.    Although the case known as Seila Law v. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, was argued on March 3 of this year, its origins date back to 2017 when Seila Law, a California-based debt relief firm, asked the CFPB to set aside a civil investigative demand (CID) that sought information to determine whether it was engaged in illegal debt relief practices.   ... read more »
Fair credit denials limit wealth-building for Black consumers and businesses
March 19, 2020
For much of Black America, access to fair and responsible credit has been an elusive promise. Whether as consumers seeking the pride of homeownership or businesses seeking to begin or expand, securing credit remains an age-old, arduous and often frustrating pursuit – despite a slew of federal and state laws enacted to overcome these long-standing racial disparities. ... read more »
Black America’s Housing Crisis: More Renters Than Homeowners, Homeless Population Jumps 12%
February 6, 2020
For many consumers, the combined costs of housing, transportation, food, and utilities leave room for little else from take-home pay. ... read more »
Will proposed CRA rule help or hurt Black America?
December 26, 2019
Amid the tinsel and garland celebrating the holiday season, two important federal financial regulators are planning how the future financial needs of low-and-moderate income (LMI) communities - including neighborhoods of color - will be met.  In an effort to “modernize” the 1977 Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) on December 12 the board of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) endorsed a proposed Notice of Public Rulemaking (NPR) offered by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC).  ... read more »
FTC announces record $191M settlement against University of Phoenix
December 19, 2019
The University of Phoenix (UOP), one of the nation’s largest for-profit colleges will pay a record $191 million settlement to resolve charges stemming from a five-year investigation by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). On December 10, Andrew Smith, Director of FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection noted it was the largest settlement the Commission has obtained in a case against a for-profit school. ... read more »
FDIC and OCC Proposals Would Strip Away Payday Loan Rate Caps In 16 States and in DC
November 28, 2019
For most people who either work, receive retirement or other fixed benefits, it seems that your money always goes a lot quicker than it comes. While some economists marvel at Wall Street’s brisk trading and declare that the economy is better than ever, not everyone has been included.  On Main Street America, millions of people know that the cost of living is rising faster and higher than their incomes. ... read more »
Housing Discrimination Complaints Reach a 24-Year High, While HUD Rolls Back Fair Housing Rules
November 21, 2019
As a candidate, President Donald Trump promised if elected that deregulation of the federal government would be an administration priority. Soon after taking the oath of office, he issued an executive order requiring that all departments and agencies to eliminate two existing regulations for every one new regulation proposed. In some cases, rules that were adopted prior to his term office but had not yet taken effect were either suspended or delayed. ... read more »
America’s Veterans Deserve Better from For-Profit Colleges
November 14, 2019
Every year, the 11th day of the 11th month is observed as Veterans Day. It’s a time to honor the 18.2 million men and women still living who served in at least one war. Though observances vary across the nation, each celebrates the American ideal of service to country.  ... read more »
Remembering Congressman Elijah Cummings and the Journey Still Ahead
November 7, 2019
The nationally televised October 25 funeral services for the late Congressman Elijah E. Cummings, paused partisan debates and revealed how a son of Baltimore worked tirelessly for his constituents and for this nation. In the days since his home-going, I have marveled at how his life’s work somehow brought together officials who held firm to their stark political divides but united to honor a man who believed that everyone deserved a fair chance at all America had to offer. ... read more »
Bicameral lawmakers: Strengthen, not weaken, CRA Capitol Hill hearings urged
October 24, 2019
For more than 40 years, the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) has served as a mechanism for the federal government to hold banks and other depository institutions accountable for meeting the credit needs of low and moderate income (LMI) neighborhoods. Enacted in 1977, the CRA has the power to influence applications for bank mergers, charters, acquisitions, and branch openings. ... read more »
Poll of Likely Voters Shows Rising Student Debt Problems: Weakened Borrower Protections, Blocked Debt Relief Cited
October 17, 2019
When likely voters across the country were recently asked their opinions about student loan borrowing, 82% agreed that the still-growing $1.5 trillion debt is a national crisis. Even when partisan affiliations were included, the solid concern for this unsustainable financial burden held strong: 74% of Republicans, 80% of independents, and 90% of Democrats. ... read more »
Senate Education Chair blocks bipartisan bill to extend HBCU funding
October 10, 2019
Each year as families beam with pride at seeing a son, daughter or another relative graduate from college, that achievement is nearly always the result of a family’s commitment to higher education.  And when these institutions are among the more than 100 Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), that pride is magnified by the history of how our forefathers overcame what once seemed to be insurmountable challenges. ... read more »
HUD Says Deregulation, Not Affordable Housing, Needed to Solve Homelessness
October 3, 2019
For more than a decade, economists, lawmakers, and others have heralded the nation’s economy. Often citing how unemployment has declined as new jobs have been created, or Wall Street trading and major bank profits rising, some might be led to believe that all is well in America.  ... read more »
Debt Collectors Target Consumers of Color, People Making Less Than $50K
September 26, 2019
Conducted by Lake Research Partners and Chesapeake Beach Consulting, the poll was jointly commissioned by the Americans for Financial Reform (AFR) and the Center for Responsible Lending (CRL). The results, released on September 11, found stark opposition by consumers to regulatory reforms announced by the CFPB. Consumers are strongly united in wanting more and better protection in this area of financial regulation. ... read more »
DeVos Hands For-Profit Colleges $11.1 Billion Over 10 Years
September 13, 2019
Most consumers would likely agree that consumers should get what they pay for. If a product or service fails to deliver its promises, refunds are in order.  ... read more »
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