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Diversity and inclusion (D&I) has grown in prevalence in recent years, most significantly with the 2011 establishment of the Office of Minority and Women Inclusion (OMWI) for regulated entities. The most pivotal aspect of this movement is accountability, to ensure that diversity work is actually being conducted and not just discussed. Entities—most recently the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)—have taken initiative in reporting their progress by providing Congress with annual OMWI reports.
In the introduction to his agency’s report, CFPB director Richard Cordray states, “This year, I am especially pleased with the progress we have made in our workplace diversity initiatives. We have focused on integrating diversity and inclusion into the fabric of the Bureau’s organizational structure and functioning.” The 2015 D&I successes of the CFPB include:
- Launching a Diversity and Inclusion Council of Employees consisting of employees from throughout the organization and the regions that can serve as a feedback mechanism to the OMWI;
- Finalizing the Bureau’s Diversity and Inclusion Strategic Plan that outlines the organizational goals to increase diversity and support inclusion over the next four years;
- Analyzing data to assess whether there are observable differences in outcome by demographics and sharing these findings with decision-makers at the Bureau;
- Providing training on hiring processes and methods to maximize diversity and inclusion; and
The bureau will continue pursuing diversity initiatives and programs in 2016, working to make D&I an integral part of all agency functions.
The SEC affirms in their report that they have “made progress from its efforts to seek gender, racial, and ethnic diversity at all levels of the agency’s workforce, as directed in Section 342 of the Dodd-Frank Act.” These efforts have produced increases in minority representation, women and minority representation among manager and supervisor positions, overall minority representation in mission critical occupations and in representation of women at the Senior Officer level.
Further 2015 SEC diversity findings:
- Women employees decreased by two-tenths of a percentage point compared to 2014
- Asian and Hispanic or Latino employees rose by half a percentage point
- Black or African American employees decreased by 0.3 of a percentage point
- From fiscal year 2012 to fiscal year 2015, minority employees grew by almost 20 percent
The SEC enters 2016 with the goal of refining agency recruitment strategies to improve gender, racial and ethnic diversity in senior management positions and advancing D&I within the agency by identifying possible obstacles to women and minorities.