Americans for Financial Reform Education Fund (AFREF) submitted comments to the Labor Department supporting a proposed rule that will allow and encourage private retirement plans and pensions to consider sustainability factors like climate change, workers’ rights, racial, economic and environmental justice, and corporate governance when investing and voting proxies.
AFREF led a letter to regulators stating that the laissez-faire stance adopted by the Department of Justice and the federal bank regulators and current merger guidelines have hurt small businesses, community banks, and households, especially those in BIPOC communities. The letter urges regulators to temporarily halt consideration of pending bank mergers until the DOJ and banking agencies adopt a plan that strengthens the guidelines to protect consumers.
Americans for Financial Reform Education Fund and Sierra Club were joined by 13 organizations in a comment letter to the DOL supporting a proposal to encourage fiduciaries to consider climate change and ESG factors, and calling for further actions to standardize sustainable investing for private retirement plans and pensions.
Americans for Financial Reform welcomes the FDIC’s action on reviewing bank mergers. In the last 15 years, the federal bank regulators have rubber-stamped merger applications. This has led to unprecedented consolidation in the industry which has hurt consumers and small businesses, in the form of bank deserts and decreased lending to small businesses while lining the pockets of the banking executives. We look forward to commenting on ways to strengthen the bank merger guidelines to protect the interest of the communities they are supposed to serve.
The Take on Wall Street campaign of Americans for Financial Reform hosted a virtual fireside chat with Dr. Dorothy A. Brown, Professor of Law at Emory University and author of The Whiteness of Wealth and Dr. Darrick Hamilton, director of the Institute for the Study of Race, Power and Political Economy at The New School, to discuss the white supremacy inherent in our tax code and how American tax policies impoverish Black Americans while enriching white Americans, and how we can restructure our system to focus on justice and equity.
Americans for Financial Reform’s Andrew Park spoke on the “Crypto’s Rapid Rise: The Future of Finance or Cause for Concern” panel at the Consumer Federation of America Virtual Financial Services Conference.
AFREF joined a memo to ED establishing their obligation to support education in reentry as Pell has been reinstated for incarcerated individuals and more individuals who will now begin a postsecondary education inside will not finish their degree within the correctional setting and will instead have to finish during reentry. The paper also demonstrates the types of support Prison Education Programs (PEP) could provide to help with the ‘education continuum’ from college inside to education outside.