JP Morgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon Says Pandemic Is A Wake-Up Call To Address Inequalities

Isheka N. Harrison
Written by Isheka N. Harrison
JP Morgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon has joined the chorus of voices saying the covid-19 pandemic is exposing the glaring inequalities between Americans. IMAGE DISTRIBUTED FOR JP MORGAN CHASE & CO. – JPMorgan Chase & Co. Chairman and CEO Jamie Dimon speaks about the importance of economic inclusivity and Detroit’s comeback on Tuesday, April 5, 2016 in Washington. JPMorgan Chase has made a $100 million commitment to the city’s economic recovery. (Kevin Wolf/AP Images for JP Morgan Chase & Co.)

JP Morgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon has joined the chorus of voices saying the covid-19 pandemic is exposing the glaring inequalities between Americans. This week he urged leaders in government and business to use it as an opportunity to create a more fair economy, Bloomberg reported.

“This crisis must serve as a wake-up call and a call to action for business and government to think, act and invest for the common good and confront the structural obstacles that have inhibited inclusive economic growth for years,” Dimon wrote in a memo to staff before the bank’s annual shareholder meeting Tuesday.

Dimon, 64, has long been an outspoken advocate for improving the economic standing of low-income Americans. In the memo he said the global coronavirus crisis “laid bare the reality that, even before the pandemic hit, far too many people were living on the edge.”

Since the U.S. was shut down in March to help combat covid-19, approx. 38.6 Americans have filed for unemployment. According to experts, decades of job gains have been wiped out by the pandemic as unemployment hits historic lows.

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With so many Black Americans working in the low-income service economy, they are at greater risk of becoming critical and dying from the virus. He urged his employees to find innovative solutions to address the systemic economic inequality in the country.

“From the re-opening of small businesses to the rehiring of workers, let’s leverage this moment to think creatively about how we can mobilize to address so many issues that inhibit the creation of an inclusive economy and fray our social fabric,” Dimon wrote.

In a letter to shareholders dated April 6, Dimon outlined the various steps the bank would take to help its customers weather the pandemic. They include: extending the grace period for mortgage, auto and other loan payments; waiving and refunding fees; not reporting late payments to credit bureaus, etc.

Not afraid to ruffle feathers, Dimon joined former President Barack Obama in criticizing the government’s lack of preparedness to deal with covid-19. “There should have been a pandemic playbook,” he wrote according to Market Watch.

Since there wasn’t, Dimon said it’s time for America to “roll up its sleeves” and lawmakers can put politics aside to provide “detailed and nonpartisan solutions.”

Refer to past Moguldom articles