The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation would be a fun place to work.
That is, if you're into heavy drinking, strip clubs, sexual harassment...
he Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) is facing scrutiny due to a report from The Wall Street Journal detailing a “party culture” within the agency.
The report includes incidents of inappropriate behavior, such as supervisors inviting employees to strip clubs, sexual misconduct, and lewd photos.
The FDIC’s heavy drinking culture, centered around an 11-story hotel, has been a significant issue.
The agency has also faced criticism for its handling of financial institutions that failed this year, and the FDIC’s vice chairman acknowledged the agency’s slow response in setting up a platform for potential bidders to examine a bank’s finances.
“A male Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. supervisor in San Francisco invited employees to a strip club,” The Wall Street Journal reported in an article titled “Strip Clubs, Lewd Photos and a Boozy Hotel: The Toxic Atmosphere at Bank Regulator FDIC.”
“A supervisor in Denver had sex with his employee, told other employees about it and pressed her to drink whiskey during work,” the report continued.
“Senior bank examiners texted female employees photos of their penises. The agency tolerated a heavy drinking culture.”
The FDIC has responded, stating that harassment goes against its values and that it has programs in place to create a safe and equitable workplace.
The report continued: “The FDIC spent more than $100 million in the 1980s to build a training complex in Arlington, Va., that included a hotel for agency staff with more than 350 rooms, an outdoor pool and a rooftop patio. The FDIC said the hotel and training complex save the agency money.”
“It was just an accepted part of the culture,” Lauren Lemmer, a former examiner-in-training, said.
Lemmer “quit her job in 2013 after three years in which she said she was denied opportunities to advance, followed back to her Dallas hotel room by a male colleague during training, invited to a strip club in Seattle by other bank examiners and sent an unsolicited naked photo by a colleague.”
An FDIC spokesman said, “Harassment in any form is contrary to the FDIC’s values and our deep commitment to fostering a diverse and inclusive workplace. We have various training, reporting, and oversight programs that endeavor to create a safe and equitable environment where all employees can feel valued and respected.”
“When we identify misconduct, we investigate and take appropriate action. In addition, we continually seek employee feedback and input on ways to promote and improve the culture through our Workplace Excellence Councils, Employee Resource Groups, and other means. To ensure we are living up to our values, we will continue to conduct periodic reviews of our programs and policies,” the spokesman said.
Onward and upward,