The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) – which, since 2007, has filed lawsuits against more than a dozen of the largest financial institutions alleging violations of the Fair Housing and Equal Credit Opportunity Acts and racial discrimination – says it is ending its lawsuit against Wells Fargo Bank NA.
Wells Fargo and the NAACP have agreed to work constructively on ways to improve fair credit access, sustainable homeownership and financial literacy for communities of color and other historically disadvantaged communities.
At the heart of this agreement is Wells Fargo's endorsement of the NAACP's ‘Banking Principles on Fairness and Lending,’ which advance practices that ensure all borrowers get the highest-quality credit vehicle appropriate for their circumstances and that guard against racial discrimination in lending.
‘We developed the NAACP banking principles to ensure that our country moves toward higher rates of sustainable homeownership," says NAACP President and CEO Benjamin Todd Jealous. "We commend Wells Fargo for taking a leadership role by being the first to embrace our principles and hope this effort becomes a model for collaborating with other financial institutions.’
Wells Fargo has invited the NAACP to review its lending practices and to make recommendations to further improve credit availability to African American and diverse businesses and consumers, to further assist borrowers facing foreclosures, and to further promote financial literacy and education.
‘In 2004, we published our fair and responsible lending principles by which we have long operated," says Jon Campbell, head of Wells Fargo's Social Responsibility Group. "We view this as the next constructive step forward in realizing our vision of helping all of our customers to further business ownership and promote financial empowerment.’
The NAACP remains in litigation with 14 other financial institutions, including JPMorgan Chase, Citibank and HSBC, over allegations of unfair lending practices and lending discrimination.