GRO Gathers to Hold Big Banks Accountable

8 years 10 months 3 weeks ago Friday, November 19 2010 Nov 19, 2010 Friday, November 19, 2010 8:57:43 AM CST November 19, 2010 in News
COLUMBIA - Grass Roots Organizing and community members gathered Thursday at Bank of America in downtown Columbia. They took a stand against the recent actions of big banks that they believe contributed to the current 9.6% unemployment rate. Hoping to tell big banks to fix their mess, the rally featured speakers who discussed Bank of America's home foreclosure practices, investments in predatory lenders, and general irresponsibility in the way the bank has handled the financial crisis.

"We're not going away." said Lily Tinker Fortel, a GRO organizer "We're going to stick together and keep calling these big banks accountable. And also if you're out there and you're a victim of predatory lending or if your homem has been foreclosed on you're not alone and you don't have to be ashamed. It's the practices of the big banks that are shameful."

The rally is part of a national effort of community groups to hold big banks accountable for the record-high unemployment rate and national foreclosure crisis. Community groups across the country are calling on Bank of America, Wells Fargo and Chase to "Clean up their Mess."

Chanting "Bank of America bad for America," around a dozen people showed up to support GRO in its rally against big banking. They marched around the blocks of Cherry and 8th streets and stood outside Bank of America holding signs.

GRO is a non-profit community group based in Mexico, Missouri. Having recently celebrated its 10th anniversary this October, its mission is to create a grassroots voice to win economic justice and human rights for all Missourians. Low-income families fund many of GRO's efforts. GRO is part of a national program called Nation People's Action.

Prior to the rally, GRO members delivered a letter to employees at Bank of America who agreed to pass it on to David C. Darnell. Darnell is the president of Global Commercial Banking of Bank of America Corporation. The letter demands that Bank of America "immediately discontinue [their] financial support for the payday lending industry."

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