November 16, 2023

Scott Statement on FDIC Allegations

Washington, D.C. – Ranking Member Tim Scott (R-S.C.) issued the following statement regarding reports of sexual harassment and a toxic workplace culture at the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC):

“The reports of sexual harassment and a toxic workplace culture at the FDIC, as well as the mismanagement allegations against Chair Gruenberg, are alarming and unacceptable of any organization – let alone an agency of the United States Government. If the FDIC fails to protect its own employees, how can we trust its mission of ensuring the safety and soundness of our financial system is being successfully carried out? These allegations deserve a thorough and independent review followed by forceful action, and I look forward to being kept informed on this matter.

“In the meantime, it appears Chair Gruenberg – both as Chairman and as a member of the board – has failed to lead and address employee concerns over the years. As such, he should seriously consider if he possesses the leadership the FDIC requires at this moment to restore confidence in the agency. As Ranking Member of the Banking Committee, I will continue to conduct rigorous oversight of the FDIC to ensure these problems are addressed, bad actors are held accountable, and a respectable office culture is restored at the agency.”

In April 2022, Senator Scott and then-Ranking Member Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) wrote to Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) Acting Chairman Martin Gruenberg regarding troubling allegations of racial discrimination and fears of retaliation at the FDIC under his previous leadership of the agency. On September 17, 2018, a group of African American employees wrote to former FDIC Chairman Jelena McWilliams to express their concerns about the FDIC’s culture over the prior 14 years—much of which occurred under Acting Chairman Gruenberg’s prior stint leading the FDIC. The letter sought to understand how the agency functioned prior to the changes McWilliams implemented to prevent reoccurrence. Scott and Toomey requested the FDIC turn over all records pertaining to allegations of workplace misconduct by senior officials, as well as any corrective or disciplinary actions related to those complaints, from November 2004 to September 2018. In a response, Gruenberg declined to provide the records, citing privilege and privacy considerations and instead described his efforts to bolster diversity programs at the agency.