ACORN Takes On Wachovia Bank

by Paul Hogarth on September 4, 2008

As families face foreclosure due to predatory lending and sub-prime mortgages, San Francisco ACORN went to Wachovia Bank yesterday with a simple goal: have the bank manager fax their list of demands to the company’s C.E.O. As the 4th largest bank in the Bay Area, Wachovia has repeatedly refused to work with families after brokering loans with incorrect incomes and balloon payments—risking the homes of those like Bayview resident Jackie Phillips. ACORN’s demands to Wachovia are: (a) negotiate loan modifications to save dozens of Bay Area families; (b) a six-month moratorium to get work-out options for sub-prime borrowers; (c) release data on how many foreclosures Wachovia has vs. amount of workouts; and (d) work with the community to set up a second-chance program for families. Incredibly, the Manager of Wachovia Bank refused to fax Jackie Phillips’ letter to the C.E.O.—and instead called the police. For two hours, ACORN held a boisterous sit-in at the bank—even chanting “fax it and we’ll leave!” so the bank could get back to business. The Bank then kicked out members of the press who were covering the protest—saying it was “private property.” Finally, at 5:45 p.m., after calling the Corporate Headquarters in North Carolina, Wachovia’s manager agreed to fax the letter to the C.E.O.

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