At yesterday’s hearing on alleged CFPB employee discrimination conducted by the House Financial Services Committee’s Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, a CFPB employee is reported to have testified that the agency has “a pervasive culture of retaliation and intimidation that silences employees and chills the workforce from exposing wrongdoing.”   

Angela Martin, a CFPB enforcement attorney, claimed that she experienced gender discrimination and retaliation for filing an Equal Employment Opportunity complaint with the CFPB’s Human Capital Office.  Ms. Martin is also reported to have testified that the CFPB is staffed with inexperienced managers who have adopted an “authoritarian” and “unaccountable” management style that allows them to discriminate against minority and female employees. 

Also testifying at the hearing was Misty Raucci, an outside investigator retained by the CFPB to look into Ms. Martin’s claims.  Ms. Raucci’s report supported Ms. Martin’s claims and in her testimony, Ms. Raucci reportedly charged the CFPB with failing to uphold its own equal employment opportunity policies.  She is also reported to have testified that during the course of her investigation, she was contacted by numerous other CFPB employees who alleged mistreatment by the CFPB. 

The CFPB declined the Subcommittee’s invitations to two of it representatives to participate in the hearing and, according to news reports, has contested the credibility and validity of Ms. Raucci’s report.  It has been reported that Democrats on the House Financial Services Committee are now urging Committee Chair Jeb Hensarling to hold a future hearing featuring senior CFPB officials.  Following the hearing, Director Cordray is reported to have issued a statement in which he apologized to any CFPB staff members who feel they have been unfairly treated and said that he welcomed the opportunity to appear before Congress to discuss the CFPB’s workplace issues. 

A video of the hearing is available here.