April 25th, 2017: As Wells Fargo shareholders gather for their annual meeting in Ponte Vedra Beach, FL, community stakeholders with the ForgoWells Coalition will be engaging in actions at Wells Fargo branches across the country, from East Orange, New Jersey to Kissimmee, Florida. They will be delivering a letter in which more than 75 organizations demand that shareholders oust 13 members of the Board of Directors, including CEO Tim Sloan, and fully support all the shareholder resolutions for bank reform. In addition to the actions at bank branches, a delegation of bank workers associated with the Committee for Better Banks, as well as Indigenous rights leaders and policy advocates, will attend the Wells shareholder meeting.
Furthermore, ForgoWells has joined with the ReFund America Project to issue a new report called Down the Wells: Wells Fargo’s Payday Loans Have Left Puerto Rico Billions of Dollars in the Hole. The report highlights Wells Fargo’s role in contributing to Puerto Rico’s debt crisis, by helping underwrite billions of dollars of predatory bonds with an effective interest rate of 734%. That report can be found at www.refundproject.org/#puerto-
“Whether it’s selling payday loans to the government of Puerto Rico or financing payday lenders that prey on communities in Black and Latino neighborhoods in the United States, Wells Fargo’s business model is built on extracting wealth from communities of color,” said Saqib Bhatti, a spokesperson for the ForgoWells Coalition and the Director of the ReFund America Project. “From Standing Rock to San Juan, the communities that Wells Fargo has devastated are rising up and demanding change.”