Occupy & Vine City Residents Take On Bank of America to Fight Foreclosure!

The foreclosure crisis hit Vine City hard. Now, only 15% of residents own their
homes and many of them are facing hardship, like resident Pamela Flores whose
property backs up to Martin Luther King III and City Councilman Michael Julian
Bond’s home.

Pamela bought her home at an inflated amount in 2006, the
height of the crime spree at the hands of American banking institutions. In 2009
she attempted to get a loan modification with Bank of America through the
“Making Homes Affordable” program. The bank told her that in order to qualify
she needed to miss 3-4 mortgage payments; this is a scam that has already put
countless Americans out of their homes. During the time she missed payments, at
the banks request and in order to meet the loan modification criteria, she fell
into foreclosure. By qualifying for the “Making Homes Affordable” program
foreclosure was temporarily avoided. Pamela began to pay trial period monthly
payments for the “Making Homes Affordable” program. When it was time for Bank of
America to grant her the promised modification, they instead mailed her a
notification alleging that she failed to make four out of five payments. Her
home, unknowing to her, was slated for auction at the Fulton County courthouse
during the time the bank claimed to be researching their records for the
“missing” payments. The thing is, Pamela Flores never missed a payment, in fact
she was never even late, and has all the records to prove it.
Pamela was forced to file for Chapter 13 and 7 bankruptcy in order to stop Bank of America from stealing her home. The act of filing has stopped Pamela from being able to recieve a student loan she had formally been approved for in her effort to pursue a
masters degree at Emory University. Her ordeal with Bank of America has forever
impacted the course of her life. The home she paid over $180k for is now
appraised at $38k.

Since she reached out to Occupy Atlanta a few weeks ago, we were able to
work with the Rainbow Push Coalition to put off her home auction for one
month–but that’s not good enough. Occupy Atlanta has begun a full scale occupation of Pamela’s home until Bank of America makes a deal to keep her in it. Occupy Atlanta
will work with her community to establish a base for defending other homes
at risk of foreclosure and eviction. We plan to target private and public
institutions that continue to disrespect Vine City residents.

Occupy Our Homes Atlanta is committed to maintaining a 24/7 presence at the home of Pamela Flores until Bank of America makes a deal that keeps her in home. During our
time here we also plan to work with the Vine City community to create a hub, at
Pamela’s home, for eviction/foreclosure defense. We invite folks from
surrounding communities who are struggling with housing issues to come down to
245 Griffin Street, Atlanta and work with us to build the communties we can
survive and thrive in.

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