Embattled homeowner Rose Gudiel and ReFund California announced a huge victory today in Los Angeles after a week of action to Make Banks Pay! The action in L.A. in the midst of a ten-city campaign to stand for The New Bottom Line.
Right now, the intersection of Figueroa and 7th outside Bank of America has been overtaken by marchers and over 25 protesters are occupying Bank of America in downtown LA, they are refusing to leave until Bank of America commits to keep families in their homes, pay their fair share of taxes and help rebuild hard-hit neighborhoods.
Meanwhile, outside the bank, homeowner Rose Gudiel, a member of the Alliance of Californians of Community Empowerment (ACCE) and the ReFund California campaign, who was arrested at a Fannie Mae office in Pasadena protesting a foreclosure just made the following statement in front of over 1000 supporters:
“I’d like to announce that the bank called me today to arrange a meeting, to discuss a modification proposal from Fannie Mae. I have also learned that my eviction has been canceled. We are very happy that they have finally come to the table, and I hope they are serious about negotiating a reasonable modification, which is what I have been requesting for over two years. And I hope that they will change their policies to stop taking the homes the thousands of hardworking families facing preventable foreclosure. Thank you.”
It's a huge victory on the heels of a series of actions aimed at holding big banks accountable for unfair lending practices and foreclosures and pushing for The New Bottom Line.
Rose Gudiel’s stand against foreclosure and her refusal to leave her home has particularly galvanized the Re-Fund California coalition and the media in California, with a front page story on the LA Times Business section.
Rose fell behind a few weeks on her payments after her brother was shot and killed. Her bank, OneWest, refused to accept her payment and then a rollercoaster of paperwork, bureaucracy and finally, denial followed. Rose has the income to pay if OneWest and Fannie Mae would cooperate, but they refuse. So last week she announced that she is is fighting her eviction by refusing to leave her home. She has been joined over the last week by family, neighbors and supporters ready to resist efforts by the LA County Sheriff’s Department to carry out the eviction.
But rather than wait for a response from the bank, Rose and 100 people took action: they marched up the hill to visit the $26 million Bel-Air mansion of OneWest Chairman and profiteer Steve Mnuchin to demand that he stop her eviction.
After the visit to Bel-Air, the group went to the office of Fannie Mae, brought a negotiating table into the lobby, only to be refused. It was then that Rose, her disabled mother and 7 others took a stand and were arrested.
Follow all the action from today's mobilization in Los Angeles on Twitter #makebankspaycalifornia and #occupyLA