BofA bars its own customers from closing their accounts

PICO National Network

A group of faith and community leaders from San Jose, CA were physically locked out of by BofA executives last week as they tried to close their accounts at the grand opening of a new Bank of America branch in the city's hard-hit East Side neighborhood. The group of faith leaders from PACT San Jose - an affiliate of the PICO National Network - was joined by San Jose Vice Mayor Judy Chirco, Tropicana Shopping Center Principal Dennis Fong, and District 5 city council candidates, and included eight individuals who intended to end their decades-long financial relationships with BofA in an effort to change the corporate practices of the bank.

Community members testified about failed attempts to get loan modifications and even basic responses from Bank of America.

Locked out by the bank, Fong and others held vigil outside the bank, while others went to other BofA branches to divest their funds.

Ignacio Coloma, from Most Holy Trinity Catholic Church, declared, "Today, I stand with my community and end a three decade banking relationship with Bank of America.  Today we say, 'not one more preventable foreclosure. Not with my money. Enough.'" Click here to see a video of Mr. Coloma's divestment statement.

Rubén Solorio's family is one of many East side San Jose families losing their home to Bank of America.  Solorio had an adjustable rate mortgage that ballooned at $6,900 after the first year.  Bank of America bought the loan but will not work out a feasible loan modification to keep him in his home; instead the bank wants to sell it at auction.

Solorio said, "I want to invite Bank of America to respect what home loans were intended for: for families to have homes, not to turn profits for investors. Bank of America, you bought a predatory loan and wanted to turn a profit. You can still turn a profit and let us keep our homes, so we're asking you to stop doing harm." Click here to see a video of of Mr. Solorio in front of Bank of America.

PACT has joined with PICO congregations across the country in a national Bank Accountability campaign to stop preventable foreclosures and keep families in their homes.