Growing up in a public housing project, I was inspired by parents that worked hard to ensure better opportunities for their children than the ones they ever had. Now, as a member of Congress, I bring that inspiration each day as I work to bridge the wealth gaps across our nation and to advocate for the underrepresented voice in housing and financial matters. As such, I have introduced the American Dream Down Payment Act to help Americans achieve the dream of owning a home. This is just one example of the work I am doing every day to ensure the promises of equality of opportunity for my constituents, regardless of who they are or how they may identify.
However, housing is just one way in which racial inequities disrupt equal opportunities in our country. I am dedicated to developing measures for diversity and inclusion across a number of financial services sectors. These include, but are not limited to, credit opportunity, business ownership, stock ownership, community banking, and corporate governance. By establishing in law provisions to bridge racial gaps in wealth and opportunity, we all can continue the hard work to improve inclusivity and accountability and build a stronger economy.
I am proud to have introduced several financial services bills in the current (117th) Congress, including the following:
H.R. 1360, The American Dream Down Payment Act will assist potential homeowners by allowing them to create tax-exempt savings accounts to go towards a home down payment. This legislation would also help close the racial gap in home ownership rates by providing a new tool for Black and Brown families to save up for a home of their own.
H.R. 3861, Making FHA Work for Borrowers with Student Debt Act of 2021 requires the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) to more fairly treat student loan borrowers looking to obtain an affordable mortgage through FHA’s insurance program. The bill achieves this goal by reforming FHA’s guidelines so that student borrowers – particularly those enrolled in repayment programs that lower their monthly obligations – are judged on their capacity to repay a mortgage based on what they actually pay in student loans monthly.
H.R. 1187, Corporate Governance Improvement and Investor Protection Act which passed in the U.S. House of Representatives, would require public companies to annually disclose the race, ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation, and veteran status of their board directors, nominees, and senior executive officers. The amendment also creates a Diversity Advisory Group that would report on strategies to increase corporate diversity. The amendment empowers the SEC’s Office of Minority and Women Inclusion (OMWI) to publish triennially best practices, in consultation with an advisory council of investors and issuers, for compliance with these enhanced disclosure rules.