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Castro and Welch announce initiative to expand diversity on bank boards

castro IMG 6357rCHICAGO – State Senator Cristina Castro (D-Elgin) joined State Rep. Emmanuel “Chris” Welch (D-Hillside) to announce a new measure that would require financial institutions that want to conduct business with Illinois state government to have a minimum of 20% of their boards be people of color.

House Bill 5806 would only affect financial institutions that want to be able to receive state dollars. It ensures that the money that Illinois invests only goes to institutions that have boards that reflect the state’s diversity. 

 

“Every person, no matter where they live, no matter who they are, no matter where they come from, and no matter the color of their skin, deserves the same opportunities,” said Castro, who plans to sponsor the measure in the Senate. “More than that, banks and other financial institutions need to consider and recognize that most Black and Brown families haven’t had the same historical access to wealth and capital as most white families.”

 

If institutions currently doing business with the state do not meet the new requirements of this measure, they will have until January, 2021 to come into compliance. After this date, the state will divest all of its investments from financial institutions without diverse boards.

“Many of these big banks have voiced their support for the Black Lives Matter movement and greater diversity, yet they lack voices of people of color on their public boards of directors,” Welch said. “If these institutions are not willing to stand with communities of color by adopting a more diverse corporate culture, they shouldn’t receive a dime of taxpayer funded business.”

Welch introduced the legislation on July 1 and will be the chief sponsor in the house and Castro will be the chief sponsor in the senate.

Sen. Cristina Castro

Senator Cristina Castro

22nd Senate District

Years served: 2017 - Present

Committee assignments: Appropriations I; Commerce and Economic Development; Energy and Public Utilities; Labor; Revenue (Chairperson); Transportation; Veterans Affairs (Vice-Chairperson); Government Accountability/Pensions (Chairperson); Opioid Crisis Abatement Spec. Com..

Associated Representative(s):
Anna Moeller
Fred Crespo