By Americans for Financial Reform
If you’re a person of color taking out a car loan, odds are you’ll pay a significantly higher interest rate than you would if you were white. Since 2013, the Consumer Bureau has begun to tackle this long-neglected, well-documented problem, both through enforcement and by issuing a guidance on fair lending law compliance for lenders working with dealerships to finance auto purchases. Congress should be praising the Bureau for its work fighting auto-loan discrimination. Instead, some law makers may vote to roll back the CFPB’s efforts.
This week, the House will vote on H.R. 1737, a bill that would invalidate the CFPB’s guidance and impose burdensome and unnecessary new procedures on any future efforts by the Bureau to address this issue.
That’s why last week, ColorOfChange, Working Families, Center for Popular Democracy and Americans for Financial Reform (AFR) delivered over 50,000 petitions urging Congress to reject H.R. 1737. The petitions were delivered to the offices of House Majority Leader Paul Ryan, Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, and Representative G.K. Butterfield, chair of the Congressional Black Caucus.
Today, 66 consumer rights, civil rights and advocacy groups also delivered a letter opposing H.R. 1737 and urging members of Congress to vote ‘no.’ The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights and 18 other civil rights groups have also written a strong letter of opposition to the bill
There’s still time to urge lawmakers to reject discrimination in auto loans by rejecting H.R. 1737: sign AFR’s petition to send an email to your Representatives.
For further background on how auto lenders charge minorities higher rates, see these past reports and news stories:
- Tom McKay, Republican-Backed Bill Could Help Shady Auto Dealers Discriminate Against Minority Buyers, Mic, 12 Nov 2015
- María Peña, Entregan al Congreso 50 mil peticiones para proteger a compradores de autos, El Diario, 13 Nov. 2015.
- Jessica Lachenal, House GOP Moves To Allow Racist Car Dealerships To Continue Being Racist, Themarysue.com, 12 Nov. 2015.
- Cory Doctorow, House GOP Defends The Right Of Racist Car-Dealers To Overcharge People Of Color Boing Boing. 11 Nov. 2015.
- Cathy O’Neil, Republicans would let car dealers continue racist practices undeterred, MathBabe.org, 11 Nov. 2015.
- Congress Should be Ashamed of Push to Roll Back Discriminatory Protection in Auto Finance, Washington Informer, 14 Aug. 2015.
- Charlene Crowell, Campaign To Rollback Consumer Protection In Auto Financing, BlackPressUSA, 7 Aug. 2015.
- NYTimes Editorial Board, Putting An End To Abusive Car Loans, N.Y. Times, 13 Jun. 2015.
- Racial Disparities in Auto Loan Markups State-by-State (NCLC, June 2015)
- Facts are Facts: Auto Dealer Interest Rate Markups Cost Consumers (Center for Responsible Lending, May 2015)
- Reckless Driving: Implications of Subprime Auto Finance Growth (Center for Responsible Lending, January 2015)