Congressman Nikema Williams Votes to Secure Equality in Access to Credit for LGBTQ Small Businesses
WASHINGTON – Today, Congresswoman Nikema Williams (GA-05) voted for H.R. 1443, the LGBTQ Business Equal Credit Enforcement and Investment Act, which improves equal access to credit for LGBTQ-owned small businesses by taking steps to improve data collection by financial institutions. This legislation, which was co-sponsored by Congresswoman Williams, will improve transparency around lending practices at financial institutions so that communities, government agencies and lenders can advance fair and equal credit access for the LGBTQ business community.
“As we Build Back Better after this pandemic, it is essential that we ensure that all of our small businesses have the resources they need to thrive,” said Congresswoman Williams. “Until we understand the extent of anti-LGBTQ discrimination in lending, we cannot guarantee that every small business owner has fair access to credit. I am proud to support and co-sponsor this legislation as we continue to celebrate Pride Month and work to end all forms of discrimination.
“This important legislation will ensure LGBTQ business owners are treated fairly, help our LGBTQ community build wealth and make the promise of America accessible to everyone—no matter who you love or how you identify.”
While financial institutions are required to collect data on business owners’ sex, race and ethnicity on loan applications, there is currently no legal requirement to collect data on self-identified sexual orientation or gender identity. This bill will require financial institutions to begin collecting this data, as well as update the Equal Credit Opportunity Act to include LGBTQ-owned businesses, so governments and institutions can address discrimination and improve access to credit for LGBTQ businesses.