April 23, 2014
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Recovery Efforts Must No Longer Ignore Communities Of Color, Says La Raza

 

 

 

Washington, DC- In a statement submitted to the U.S. House of Representatives Financial Services Committee, Janet Murguía, President and CEO of NCLR (National Council of La Raza), the largest national Latino civil rights and advocacy organization in the United States, today expressed disappointment with the federal government's lack of a targeted response to the foreclosure crisis and its devastating effects on minority communities.

While news headlines are pointing to early signs of economic recovery, this is not the experience of Hispanic families. More than 400,000 Latino families may lose their homes to foreclosure this year, with as many as 1.3 million Latino families expected to enter foreclosure over the next four years. Latinos have experienced the largest increase in unemployment of any group since the recession began two years ago.

NCLR has long urged Congress to break the cycle of financial devastation that has occurred as a result of the foreclosure crisis. The government's lack of intervention in the housing market allowed for mass foreclosures, leading to this great recession that has left more than one million Latinos unemployed. Rising unemployment further jeopardizes Hispanic homeownership and financial security.

"NCLR and the civil rights community have urged Congress and the administration to move swiftly to provide relief to families facing foreclosures. Instead, policymakers have relied on the voluntary efforts by the private sector," said Murguía. "The ineffective responses to the foreclosure crisis are one of the greatest threats to a full economic recovery. It is critical that policymakers and industry stakeholders reevaluate and adjust their approach."

NCLR recommends that Congress finally address communities of color in recovery efforts by:

  • Making participation in the Making Home Affordable loan modification program mandatory and enforceable for companies that accept taxpayer funding
  • Supporting community-based organizations involved in foreclosure prevention efforts by paying counseling agencies for their work similarly to how servicers are paid for loan modifications
  • Holding federal programs publicly accountable for spending and performance
  • Providing relief in the form of loss mitigation tools for the underemployed and unemployed, including allowing judges to modify home mortgages in bankruptcy court; automatic and mandatory forbearance of government-insured loans; and affordable loans

For more information, visit www.nclr.org | http://www.facebook.com/nationalcounciloflaraza | http://www.myspace.com/nclr2008 | http://twitter.com/nclr.

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