National CAPACD Welcomes Actions to Expand Definition of “Other Targeted Populations” for Certified CDFIs
US Treasury CDFI Fund expands target populations to include Vietnamese and Filipino populations, as well as Pacific Islanders in the continental U.S.
The U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Community Development Financial Institutions Fund (CDFI Fund) released a revised Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) Certification Application yesterday. The definition of “Other Targeted Populations” for Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) now includes some Asian groups for the first time.
The National Coalition for Asian Pacific American Community Development (National CAPACD) welcomes actions taken by the U.S. Treasury to expand the definition of “Other Targeted Populations” (OTPs) for certified Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) to include underserved Vietnamese and Filipino populations, as well as Pacific Islanders living in the continental U.S.
Although some Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders have long been served through the program, the OTP category allows CDFIs to receive credit for providing financial products and services to specific racial and ethnic populations. For years, the OTP definition has included other overlooked communities, like African Americans, Hispanics, and Native Americans, but not a single Asian American group. It also excludes Pacific Islanders who reside in the continental United States. The lack of designation as a target population discourages investment in these populations, so the decision to start defining more groups as OTPs is a win for a more fair and equitable financial marketplace.
“We are pleased to see this recognition of the barriers faced by our communities in accessing direly needed capital in our neighborhoods and communities. It is an important first step in achieving equity for Asian American and Pacific Islander communities. We would like to see many more Asian American groups included in the definition of other targeted populations moving forward,” states Seema Agnani, CEO of National CAPACD.
This action also honors President Biden’s commitment to creating a more equitable and inclusive country that breaks down historic barriers and helps build a brighter future for everyone. National CAPACD’s member organizations across the country remain committed to working with the Administration to advance further inclusion of other underserved groups.
“Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders have the highest rates of entrepreneurship in the U.S., yet the public or private sector does not adequately resource our ambitions and contributions. The addition of Vietnamese and Filipino OTPs is the first of what we hope will be many positive steps in recognizing the capital needs of all AAPI communities throughout the country – needs Renaissance understands well through our more than 25 years of serving struggling AAPI populations. We encourage the Treasury to continue its evaluations of these needs in the years ahead, including analysis of additional data relevant to small business financing” shared Jessie Lee, Managing Director, Renaissance Economic Development Corporation.
“While ASIAN, Inc. is encouraged to see that existing government data substantiates the inclusion of more Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders as Other Targeted Populations, we will not rest until government data collection improves such that the U.S. Treasury CDFI Fund may also designate other subsets of our diverse AANHPI small business community. We see this step as a down payment on a longer road of greater investment in AANHPIs, the colors of whose skin are often a root cause of historical discrimination in the public and private sectors. Disaggregated data that tell the stories that we already know on the ground are key to a fuller investment, and we call on the Treasury Department to continue its work towards that,” shared Lamar Heystek, President, ASIAN, Inc.
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