Our Tuesday, Nov. 22 action downtown, “Auction of Dreams,” was exciting, creative, and effective. We had some good media coverage, too. Serving notice on Bank of America and Wells Fargo was GREAT! We foreclosed on them chanting that, “Bank of America is Bad for America!” “They got bailed out, We got sold out!” At Wells Fargo we told their customers, “Take out your money! Wells Fargo invests in private prisons.” We chanted “Homes for New Mexicans not prisons!” as we marched out the other.
At the county courthouse we auctioned off a whole bunch of people’s dreams – popping each one with the Big Headed Banker’s Cigar of GREED! Our “I Will Survive” Dancing Flash Mob allowed us to keep the courthouse plaza for a few more minutes while we followed our leader dressed as THE POPE! On the sidewalk we continued to auction dreams and had a spontaneous “scene” between the 1%’ers among us (“reps” from Wells Fargo and Bank of America as well as Mr. Big Headed Banker) and the 99% – we even included county court security guards in the theatrics.
We also heard from a man who was at the court to try to stop the foreclosure of his home.
BIG THANKS to all who made this event so successful!
From our press release:
Members of the (un)Occupy Albuquerque movement will protest the auction of foreclosed homes by holding a mock “auction of the American dream.” The group hopes to call attention to the sky-rocketing number of foreclosures putting New Mexican families on the streets. (un)Occupy protesters are also calling for a moratorium to stop foreclosures.
Recent foreclosure statistics include:
- New Mexico is number two in the nation for increased foreclosure activity in the 3rd quarter.
- Initial foreclosure actions filed in state district courts against homeowners jumped 75 percent from 350 in September to 611 in October.
- Santa Fe county had the highest foreclosure rate in the state; one out of every 452 homes in October.
- In Bernalillo county, one out of every 551 homes received foreclosure notice.
- New Mexico had the 15th-highest foreclosure rate in the country at 3.9 percent.
“Foreclosures are equal opportunity disasters. When the bank is coming for your home it doesn’t matter if you are a democrat, a republican, or a socialist. It used to be banks tried to keep you in your home but the way it’s structured today, they want your home,” said Diana Dorn-Jones with the Fair Lending Center from the United South Broadway Corporation (UCSB).
The UCSB offers legal counseling and services for families facing foreclosure in New Mexico. The organization is also promoting SB 406 — the Mortgage Fair Foreclosure Act– intended to reduce foreclosures by requiring banks to work with eligible homeowners to complete a loan
modification process before filing for foreclosure.