Juneteenth is a day like no other. It is both a celebration of freedom and a reminder of the work that remains to be done to create a more equitable society. So, as we celebrate Juneteenth this year, now is the time to harness what unites us and help bring about change that benefits all communities.
Taking action that focuses on racial equity, as well as diversity and inclusion, requires collaboration and building trust in the community. JPMorgan Chase is helping drive lasting change through its five-year, $30 billion Racial Equity Pledge. With a business-led approach, this commitment aims to help address key drivers of the racial wealth divide in Black, Latino and Hispanic communities by investing directly.
Since its launch in October 2020, we have deployed or committed over $18 billion toward our $30 billion goal. To sustain this progress, we need to measure this effort and listen to feedback so we can have an even greater impact in closing the wealth gap.
Here are some of the progress we have made in our commitment while working alongside our community partners across the country so far:
- Helped homeowners save money on their monthly mortgage payments by refinancing 19,000 of our target of 20,000 additional loans
- Funding approved for approximately $13 billion in loans to help create and preserve more than 100,000 affordable housing and rental units across the United States
- We’ve expanded our homebuyer grant program to $5,000 to help with the down payment and closing costs
- Helped customers open over 200,000 low-cost checking accounts with no overdraft fees
- Spent an additional $155 million with 140 Black, Hispanic, and Latino vendors
- Invested over $100 million in equity in 15 diverse financial institutions that serve more than 89 communities in 19 states and the District of Columbia
- Coaching over 1,000 Black, Hispanic, and Latino small businesses
Create community impact
At the heart of our business is the branch of the local community bank. But a local bank branch, especially in underserved neighborhoods, can only be successful if it meets the needs of the community. That’s why, over the past few years, we’ve changed our approach from community banking to ‘community building’ – a grassroots approach to better meet the needs of our local communities.
Our community center branches are the most tangible symbols of our commitment to community development, as they were created to be a unique space in the heart of urban communities that hosts grassroots community events, small business mentoring sessions and financial health seminars.
Currently we have 12 community center locations in neighborhoods like Oakland, Stony Island on Chicago’s South Shore, Crenshaw in Los Angeles, and Wards 7 and 8 in Washington, D.C.
We will continue to add these Community Center branches in underserved communities in Miami, Atlanta, Baltimore, Philadelphia and Tulsa by the end of this year. We also upgraded over 300 existing branches, to now include spaces the community can use to help expand access to banking services and build financial health and inclusion among Black, Hispanic and Latino communities. .
A more diverse workforce
Creating lasting impact is as much about the people we hire as the programs we implement. More diverse teams will allow us to generate better ideas and better results, benefit from a stronger corporate culture and deliver a more transformational banking experience to our customers.
Despite the pandemic and talent retention challenges, we continue to strengthen our representation, especially with women and people of color.
We want our branches to represent the neighborhoods they serve, which is why we continue to hire from our local communities. During this time, we have hired more than 300 people in community-focused positions: nearly 150 community managers, 150 community mortgage advisors, as well as 25 senior business consultants.
The Community Center Manager, in particular, is a new role within the bank whose primary job is to serve as local ambassadors to build trust and nurture relationships with community leaders, nonprofit partners and small enterprises.
Over the past year, our community managers hosted over 1,300 community events reaching over 36,000 people nationwide with discussions ranging from ways to increase homeownership to how to create wealth and generational stability.
As we celebrate June 19 this year, we are reminded of the promise and hope of the future.
We are committed to ensuring that you have the resources you need to own a home, start a business, save for college – or achieve any other goal or dream. We look forward to working together and continuing to create a lasting impact for your community and your family for years to come.
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