Sara Appel, a graduate instructor at Duke University, plans to close her Wells Fargo bank account this week. It wasn't a difficult decision, she said. She'd never opened one.
The 32-year-old literature grad student, had been a Wachovia customer for several years and only became a Wells Fargo client when the California-based bank bought Wachovia.
"One day I was a Wachovia customer and then I was a Wells Fargo customer, whether I liked it or not," she said.
Next Saturday (Nov. 12) , organizers with movemoneydurham.org, part of Occupy Durham, hope others will join Appel, as the movement seeks to move money from big banks to local banks and credit unions.
About 75 people attended a rally yesterday in CCB Plaza, where credit unions provided information on their services. Among protesters' main points, printed on a flier at the rally, were these:
- Credit unions are nonprofits; banks are for profit.
- Credit unions educate their members; banks have negotiated mortgages even though they gave borrowers mortgages they would be unable to pay back.
- Credit unions reinvest in their communites; most major banks took a government bailout but retain "staggering profits."
"I think banks are banking on us forgetting what happened a few years ago," said Appel, one of the organizers. "They're responsible for the situation we're in."