Congressional Hispanic Caucus members call for diversity within the Fed

Congressional Hispanic Caucus members call for diversity within the Fed
© Greg Nash

Top members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus are raising concerns over the levels of staff diversity within the Federal Reserve System, arguing there should be more minorities in leadership roles to better reflect the makeup of the United States.  

In a letter spearheaded by Congressional Hispanic Caucus Chairman Joaquin CastroJoaquin CastroGovernment watchdog finds top Trump DHS officials are ineligible for their positions Lawmakers of color urge Democratic leadership to protect underserved communities in coronavirus talks This week: Congress set for bipartisan coronavirus talks as clock ticks MORE (D-Texas) and sent to Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell, the group of lawmakers cited the number of people of color in significant roles and said they believe diversity efforts in hiring need to be increased. 

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“As of the date of this letter, the websites of the regional Federal Reserve Banks indicate that there were only four Hispanics among the 107 filled seats on the Regional Banks Boards of Directors. Just two Hispanics serve as Class C Directors and you have direct authority over these appointments,” they wrote. 

“There has never been a Hispanic President of a Federal Reserve Bank. In 2019, this is not acceptable. Placing Hispanics in trusted public roles is vital and sets a meaningful precedent at a time when the political and civil rights environment for Latinos has deteriorated so dramatically.”

Reps. Ruben GallegoRuben GallegoHispanic Caucus asks for Department of Labor meeting on COVID in meatpacking plants The Hill's Campaign Report: Biden's latest plan on racial inequality Overnight Energy: Official says protesters not cleared from Lafayette Square for Trump | Trump administration blasts banks refusing to fund Arctic drilling | 2019 coal production hit lowest level since 1978 MORE (D-Ariz.), Nanette Diaz Barragán (D-Calif.), Adriano EspaillatAdriano de Jesus Espaillat CabralHispanic Caucus asks for Department of Labor meeting on COVID in meatpacking plants The Hill's Campaign Report: Biden's latest plan on racial inequality Moped sharing company suspends operations in New York after second rider's death MORE (D-N.Y.), Veronica EscobarVeronica EscobarHispanic Caucus asks for Department of Labor meeting on COVID in meatpacking plants The Hill's Campaign Report: Biden's latest plan on racial inequality Democrats hope clash resonates with key bloc: Women MORE (D-Texas) and Tony Cárdenas (D-Calif.) and Sen. Bob MenendezRobert (Bob) MenendezSenators ask for removal of tariffs on EU food, wine, spirits: report VOA visa decision could hobble Venezuela coverage Bottom line MORE (D-N.J.) signed the letter.

The group said they are willing and ready to provide “advice and support” on how the Fed can create a more inclusive environment better represent Hispanic voices. 

“We encourage you to take a stronger leadership role promoting diversity within the Fed, specifically at the governance level,” they said. 

The lawmakers went on to request information on what steps the Fed is taking to ensure greater diversity; how officials are “encouraging regional Federal Reserve banks to include one or more community advisors to participate closely in the interviews and vetting of candidate"; whether they are ensuring they interview diverse candidates “for the position of President when they become open”; and what training and retention programs are in place to promote the growth of diverse junior staffers.