Community members denounce Wells Fargo & US Bank for their heartless treatment of cancer patients

Today actions in Atlanta, Minneapolis, Los Angeles and San Francisco will target Wells Fargo and US Bank, asking them to honor Breast Cancer Awareness Month by halting foreclosures and evictions of cancer patients and others batting serious illness and instead negotiate fair and affordable mortgages that will allow families to stay in their homes.

The organizers are highlighting the cases of Jacqueline Barber of Georgia and Ana Casas Wilson in Los Angeles who are each battling cancer and working with housing activists to resist imminent evictions after facing foreclosure despite repeated pleas to the banks to renegotiate their home loans. Occupy Homes Atlanta activists have set up an encampment at the home of Jacqueline Barber, a retired police officer; the Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment (ACCE) working to stop the eviction of Casas, a longtime advocate for the disabled.

More details on the campaigns, as well as the four events today, are below the fold.

Atlanta: JoSelf Freeman’s eviction was stopped today, but his fight goes on

This morning, Occupy Our Homes Atlanta was able to stave of the eviction of JoSelf Freeman, who was facing eviction at the hands of Bank of America and Fannie Mae. JoSelf has a petition going on Start2.OccupyOurHomes.org and has been working with Occupy Our Homes Atlanta to keep his home. Here’s the update on this mornings victory from OOH ATL:

With ya’lls help we were able to put off JoSelf’s eviction this morning! If it weren’t for all the calls, emails, and folks in JoSelf yard there’s no doubt that his belongings would be in the yard.

JoSelf has been granted an additional 17 days before another eviction date. That means we have 17 days to building JoSelf campaign and convince Fannie Mae and Bank of America to do the right thing.

For those that haven’t seen it, here is JoSelf’s story:

More below the fold

CA: Join in Ana Casas Wilson’s Last Stand For Her Home

Ana Casas Wilson of South Gate, California has been fighting Wells Fargo and US Bank for her home. Peggy Mears of the community group ACCE reports that, “She has been struggling for months to get Wells Fargo and US Bank to accept her money and stop foreclosing on her home of forty years. She is now faced with being forcibly evicted from her home by sheriff’s deputies tomorrow (Wednesday).”

ACCE is organizing to help Ana and has asked supporters around the country to make calls to Wells and US Bank today to stop the eviction.

Can you call US Bank CEO Richard K. Davis at 877-753-0557 and Well Fargo CEO John Stumpf at 888-253-8295 and tell them to negotiate with Ana Casas Wilson of South Gate?

Read more about Ana and get a call script below the fold.

Jacqueline Barber’s Stay Struck Down By The Court, Jacqueline Vows To Resist Eviction Press Conference and Launch of Occupation

Today US Bank and GMAC lawyers fought to lift the stay on Jacqueline Barber’s home. Although we packed the courtroom with supporters, they were successful, which brings them one step closer to being able to evict Jacqueline and her four young grandchildren. The case failed because Jacqueline’s Chapter 13 bankruptcy (which was grounds for the stay) was filed after the home was sold on the court house steps.

It is clear that US Bank and GMAC intent to begin the eviction process immediately.

Jacqueline has made it clear that she will fight no matter what stating that, “If they come to put me out, I hope Occupy Our Homes will be carried out with me because they’re going to have to have to physically remove me from the property. I refuse to roll over and play dead.”

Occupy Our Homes ATL plans to dual track the bank the same way they dual tracked Jacqueline and millions of other Americans. Jacqueline was dual tracked when America’s Servicing Company claimed they were working on her modification while simultaneously foreclosing on her. Occupy Our Homes ATL will dual track US Bank and GMAC by helping Jacqueline pursue legal action in state court and taking aggressive direct action to keep Jacqueline and her family in their home.

Tomorrow morning at 11am we will be launching a full scale 24/7 occupation of Jacqueline’s home. We will be joined by many of Jacqueline’s former co-workers at the APD and other supporters, many of whom have committed to refuse to leave when the marshals come to evict. We invite the press for interviews at 11am.

(More details below the fold)

Atlanta: Jacqueline Barber APD veteran and cancer patient faces eviction hearing

Today US Bank and GMAC lawyers fought to lift the stay on Jacqueline Barber’s home. Although we packed the courtroom with supporters, they were successful, which brings them one step closer to being able to evict Jacqueline and her four young grandchildren. The case failed because Jacqueline’s Chapter 13 bankruptcy (which was grounds for the stay) was filed after the home was sold on the court house steps.

It is clear that US Bank and GMAC intent to begin the eviction process immediately.

Jacqueline has made it clear that she will fight no matter what stating that, “If they come to put me out, I hope Occupy Our Homes will be carried out with me because they’re going to have to have to physically remove me from the property. I refuse to roll over and play dead.”

Occupy Our Homes ATL plans to dual track the bank the same way they dual tracked Jacqueline and millions of other Americans. Jacqueline was dual tracked when America’s Servicing Company claimed they were working on her modification while simultaneously foreclosing on her. Occupy Our Homes ATL will dual track US Bank and GMAC by helping Jacqueline pursue legal action in state court and taking aggressive direct action to keep Jacqueline and her family in their home.

Tomorrow morning at 11am we will be launching a full scale 24/7 occupation of Jacqueline’s home. We will be joined by many of Jacqueline’s former co-workers at the APD and other supporters, many of whom have committed to refuse to leave when the marshals come to evict. We invite the press for interviews at 11am.

(More details below the fold)

Keep 20 Year Atlanta Police Veteran and Cancer Patient In Her Home

Jacqueline Barber’s story struck a chord with the American people as it became one of the most reposted stories in the country.

This morning Occupy Homes Minnesota delivered a letter to U.S. Bank’s headquarters in Minneapolis. U.S. Bank downplayed their role in Jacqueline’s crisis and passed the blame on to GMAC. Like many loans originated in the height of the housing bubble, Jacqueline’s mortgage was bundled with other mortgages and sold to investors. U.S. Bank claims responsibility solely for dealing with investors in the trust (RASC 2006-emx2). According to U.S. Bank, GMAC is responsible for dealing with the other side of the trust, the homes and homeowners whose monthly payments are treated as poker chips to be amassed and turned over to investors.

While U.S. Bank may state that GMAC is the servicer of the trust, it is undeniable that U.S. Bank bought the home on the courthouse steps. It is also impossible to deny that attorneys hired by and representing U.S. Bank will be present in a Newnan courtroom on Thursday aggressively seeking to evict a 20 year veteran of the Atlanta Police Department whose cancer has just come out of remission.

Today Occupy Our Homes ATL will launch a national call in day to U.S. Bank and GMAC with two simple requests, stop attempts to evict, and make a deal that keeps the family in the home.

Please call CEO Richard Davis of U.S. Bank at 612-303-0840 and Elizabeth Desilva 214-874-6821 at GMAC and urge themto call off the eviction and make a deal to keep the family in their home!

(More information below the fold)

US Bank Set to Evict Atlanta Police Department Veteran and Cancer Patient

Active and retired APD officers will join Jacqueline Barber, her four Grandchildren, and Occupy Our Homes ATL to send the message to US Bank that she will not be evicted.

Jacqueline Barber is a retired Atlanta Police Department detective who was injured on the job and forced into early retirement. After purchasing a home big enough for her, her daughter, and four children tragedy struck.

Jacqueline was diagnosed with multiple myeloma, a form of bone marrow cancer. While undergoing aggressive chemotherapy and radiation treatments, her son helped start the long process of applying for a loan modification with Wells Fargo. After almost a year of treatment, including a bone marrow transplant, Jacqueline’s disease went into remission.

Like millions of American’s Jacqueline had a bad loan. Her payments shot up by $1,500 a month as her property value plummeted.

Over the next two years Jacqueline sent in document after document to the bank, attended countless seminars with housing counseling agencies, and tried everything she could to obtain a loan modification, all while still in a wheelchair from the pain she was suffering. Her family even fell victim to so called “foreclosure rescue” groups, paying them over $3000 for modification assistance. Finally in early 2012, Jacqueline received a letter from the executive VP of Wells Fargo assuring her that they were working on her case. I felt a sense of hope at the prospect of finally getting some relief.

Much to her surprise, Jacqueline received a letter a few weeks later from US Bank, claiming they had purchased her home at auction, and demanding that she vacate the property. Despite their assurances that they were working on her case, it seems Wells Fargo had moved forward with the foreclosure.

US Bank is now demanding that the family vacate the property immediately, even refusing to sell it back to Jacqueline’s friends and family members who were more than willing to purchase the home back from them. Desperate to put off the eviction and find a way to stay in her home, Jaqueline filed for bankruptcy in August which granted her a temporary stay from the eviction. The stress has caused Jacqueline’s cancer to come out of remission, and she now has to resume aggressive treatment to fight it. Now US Bank is taking Jacqueline to court to demand the judge lift the stay, allow them to evict the family, and force Jacqueline to pay their legal fees on top of it.

Take action below the fold.

DC: Homeowners, Renters, and Homeless Unite Against Fannie/Freddie In Day of Action

Yesterday homeowners and housing justice activists from around the country to target Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and FHFA chief Ed DeMarco around a set of demands that would keep people in their homes and return power to local communities. Groups from around the country, including numerous local Occupy Our Homes groups, convened in Washington, DC to take back the peoples’ bank. 

The American Friends Service Committee/Atlanta blog has a great write-up on the day and the role Occupy Our Homes Atlanta activists played as part of it. 

After pulling off actions at every regional Fannie/Freddie office in early September, several cities decided to send delegations to Washington DC to confront Freddie and Fannie at their national offices.

With little time to organize, we were able to pull eleven folks from Atlanta to make the trip.

Micheline Meusa, Renika Wheeler and their two children were among our Atlanta delegation. Both have lost jobs in the last six months and as a result of having a very limited safety net they ended up on the street. Renika and Micheline have bounced from shelter to shelter and have been unable to obtain work, despite looking for work almost every day.

Renika and Micheline represent a segment of the population that has, up to this point, often been left out of the housing crisis conversation.

One thing that was exciting about today’s action was having the story’s of homeowners, renters, and homeless elevated to the some importance.

The sad fact is that Atlanta has six empty homes for every homeless person, and Atlanta is full of homeless people now more then ever.

After demonstrating outside Fannie Mae this morning, five people impacted by Fannie’s practices decided to commit an act of civil disobedience that landed them in jail, Renika was one of them. She’s out now!

After leaving Fannie we made a quick trip to Freddie Macs headquarters, then we decided to do something special.

All of us went to Edward Demarco’s to not only give him a piece of our mind and deliver a pink slip, we also had a pizza party on his lawn.

Read more about the fight against Fannie and Freddie below the fold.

Chicago: Help Stop Maria’s Eviction!

Communities United Against Foreclosure and Eviction in Chicago have a call to action to help Maria Dolores:

Rogers Park resident Maria Dolores could be evicted from her home in the coming weeks, unless Fannie Mae gives her back her house. We can make it happen… if we all call Fannie Mae this week!

Contact Kristy Williams Fercho at 312-386-6230 (office), 202-441-4483 (cell), or kristy_williams_fercho@fanniemaie.com . Also call the Fannie Mae front desk, at 312-368-6200.

Tell her: “My name is __________ I am calling on behalf of Maria Dolores, who lives at 7250 N Claremont. I am calling to ask you to stop all eviction proceedings on her and all families, and to initiate negotiations directly with her. I vow to support her home occupation and continue protesting, until Fannie Mae gives her back her home.”