Bay Area activists are calling for an end to what they say are fraudulent lending practices and illegal evictions by banks.
Community members plan to occupy foreclosed homes today as part of a national day of action marking the start of the “Occupy Our Homes” campaign, which aims to protect families and individuals from being turned out on the street.
The event is taking place in more than 25 cities nationwide, including at least six in the Bay Area: San Francisco, Oakland, San Jose, Petaluma, Redwood City and Oakley.
Causa Justa, a grassroots housing and immigrant rights organization in Oakland and San Francisco, is leading a rally and march in West Oakland, where demonstrators plan to occupy a foreclosed property that they say should be converted to low-income housing.
The 2 p.m. rally, which will begin at the West Oakland BART station, is one of several foreclosure-related events in Oakland today, including marches beginning at Snow Park and Defremery Park.
In San Jose, community members planned to gather this morning outside the home of Darlene Bowland, whom they describe as an elderly cancer patient who was evicted from her home of more than 41 years.
Community leaders and public officials are joining Bowland in calling for a holiday moratorium on evictions, especially of the elderly and the infirm.
On the Peninsula, demonstrators were expected to gather at noon a Redwood City home. That action aims to defend the homeowner from what organizers say is a wrongful eviction.
The group Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment, or ACCE, says that the action in Redwood City is necessary because the government has left communities behind.
“The 99 percent bailed out Wall Street, while Wall Street bailed on our communities, taking our money for outrageous executive salaries and bonuses and massive profits,” ACCE said in a statement.
ACCE also said dozens of families and individuals in San Francisco could be evicted from their homes in neighborhoods around City Hall today.
A noon news conference was scheduled to take place on the steps of City Hall to demand that the San Francisco Sheriff’s Office and Board of Supervisors sign a pledge to stop evictions during the holiday season.