The Center for Responsible Lending is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization which works to eliminate abusive financial practices through policy and research. CRL focuses on those marginalized and/or underserved by current financial practices and markets, including rural folks, women, people of color, and low-wealth folks. CRL also works to make finance more equitable by demystifying the field with financial literacy workshops and issue-specific panels with experts and politicians.
CRL grew out of Self-Help, a community development lender which was created in 1980 in order to serve those turned away from the majority of lenders—the same groups mentioned above. Self-Help was born out of the recognition that protecting wealth and homeownership, especially for those targeted by predatory lending practices, is good for the entire community. Similarly, CRL opened in recognition of growing efforts to counter the hard work and progress of people like Self-Help’s clients, and the consequent desire to protect citizens’ ability to build wealth and community stability.
As CRL’s success in reaching these goals grew, they opened offices in Washington, DC and Oakland, CA to further expand their ability to partner with local organizations and draw broader attention to issues of financial reform. CRL’s community reach continues to grow, along with its experience and expertise in community organizing and coalition building. Whether on its own or partnering with groups such as the NCLC, NAACP, and other housing, legal aid, and Civil Rights groups, CRL works diligently to ensure equitable access to fair financial practices.
Learn more about the work CRL is doing by visiting their website: https://www.responsiblelending.org/