Dear friends, We’ve seen banks make some pretty audacious moves, but this one takes the cake. Just days away from the MLK holiday, BB&T bank is attempting to foreclose on one of the oldest churches in Dr. King’s old neighborhood -- Vine City in Atlanta. The church, Higher Ground Empowerment Center, has been a cornerstone of one of Atlanta’s most historic and under-resourced communities for the past 108 years. After a tornado ripped through the property in 2008, the church was forced to take out a loan to cover the repairs. It has managed to pick itself up, rebuild, and continue servicing the community. But now BB&T wants to foreclose, ignoring the church's attempts to work with the bank to modify the loan.Sign the petition and tell BB&T's CEO Kelly King to stop foreclosure on this historic pillar of the community.
This church needs your help, so we've started an emergency petition.
BB&T took $3.1 billion in bailout money from the American people in 2008 and used it to eat up hundreds of smaller banks, acquiring another $26 billion in assets the following year.Higher Ground Empowerment Center is not asking for a bailout. For four years, they’ve simply been asking BB&T to modify their loan to something more reasonable, based on the property's fair value. But the bank has refused. Sadly, their situation is just like millions of other homes and properties with underwater mortgages -- banks just seem to lack all manners and decency, and often won't even return phone calls. In this case, the reason is simple -- the church is sitting on a valuable piece of land and the bank stands to make a huge profit. Since 2004, Vine City has been undergoing “urban renewal” efforts. Through this process, banks have foreclosed on business owners and residents in the short term, while profiting off of inflated property values in the long run.
If this church is foreclosed, it will have a domino effect on the rest of the community.Occupy Atlanta has jumped in to support the Higher Ground Empowerment Center and the Vine City community. They've brought valuable attention to this situation and the bank is showing that they're paying attention. Now is a critical moment to add momentum and show the bank that people across the country are watching. BB&T should be helping, not exploiting, the church and the Vine City community. Click here to sign the petition and tell BB&T CEO Kelly King to negotiate fairly with the church. Thank you for taking a stand, Van, Natalie, Billy, Jim, Ian, Somer and the rest of the Rebuild the Dream team
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