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Working America has launched an action campaign calling on Americans to contact their state attorneys general and demand a fair settlement that holds big banks accountable for their role in the financial crisis. In particular, the focus is on making sure that banks are accountable for fraud and abuse of homeowners that was widespread in the lead-up to the recession and the foreclosure crisis that has continued after the recession ended.
The fear is that the attorneys general will accept a settlement that will let the banks get away with the practices they engaged in that hurt Americans and the economy. The currently proposed settlement also doesn't go far enough in helping underwater homeowners.
From the press release announcing the action:
Working America has launched a campaign calling on the White House and all 50 state attorneys general to hold big banks accountable for corrupt mortgage practices that led to the foreclosure and financial crises that have left millions without homes and more at risk of losing their homes.
The current proposed settlement would only partially help about 2 million homeowners stuck with underwater mortgages– barely 20 percent of those facing foreclosure. The settlement also does not prevent future foreclosures, or create any accountability or restitution for working families who were defrauded by predatory schemes, reports say.
Experts have called the current proposed settlement “meaningless” in offering relief or justice to homeowners deceived by improper mortgage practices.
Meanwhile, the largest mortgage servicers that are being investigated for deceptive practices–Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Citigroup and Ally Financial –would be essentially let off the hook.
“This would be pocket change for the big banks and a travesty for working families,” said Working America Executive Director Karen Nussbaum. “Our working-class members around the country are not debating this – they want a thorough investigation of criminal wrongdoing, accountability and appropriate restitution. They do not want another bank bailout.”
About 7.5 million homes are currently in the foreclosure process. An additional 11 million are at risk – threatening many of Working America’s 3 million members with the loss of their homes.