In an unusual open letter to employees of an agency, the new chair of the House Financial Services Committee has told employees of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau that she values their work and that she will “fight against any and all efforts to weaken” the agency.
The letter from Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., also sends yet another signal of the change in oversight of agencies by the House following the switch to Democratic control in last fall’s elections. “I am writing to reassure you of the importance and value of your work, and to let you know, in no uncertain terms, that the anti- consumer actions mandated by Trump appointees will not be tolerated. I will work hard to ensure that you will once again be fully empowered to perform your duties on behalf of America’s consumers,” she wrote.
She cited the significant drop in employee morale at the agency as measured by the Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey and the Best Places to Work in Government rankings. The agency “should be a place where you are not only proud of your work, but you are also confident of the value you provide in protecting the consumers of our country from unfair, deceptive, or abusive acts or practices of bad actors.”
She also encouraged employees to make whistleblowing disclosures to her office and said the committee “will not tolerate any intimidation of or retaliation against potential witnesses by anyone at any federal agency.”