Families continue to suffer as deadline is reached for banks to find a solution to crises

MINNEAPOLIS– On Friday afternoon, hundreds of members of Minnesota’s Somali and Latino communities will gather at Wells Fargo Center in downtown Minneapolis to close their accounts in response to the bank’s ongoing unwillingness to address pressing concerns of both communities.

“Since late last year, Minnesota Somalis have had difficulty transferring funds to our family members in East Africa, cutting off a vital lifeline to the country,” said Hashi Shafi, Executive Director of the Somali Action Alliance. “Somali Community leaders have sought solutions by appealing directly to Wells Fargo and U.S. Bank. Today, a solution still has not been reached. We’re done waiting.”

At a large community meeting in March, Minnesota Somali leaders set a deadline of May 11 for the banks to find a solution. This event is the result of the passing of that deadline.

Representatives from Minnesota’s large Latino community will also be on hand—standing in solidarity with their Somali brothers and sisters and to close their own accounts in response to Wells Fargo’s continued activities, which apparently help bankroll a for-profit prison system that seemingly targets immigrant communities in an unfair way.

Faith leaders, Somali and Latino community activists, community members who plan to close their accounts and move their money from Wells Fargo.

To move money from Wells Fargo in response to the bank’s unwillingness to fully address the concerns of the Somali and Latino communities.

Combined, both the Latino and Somali community have gathered over 1,000 signatures from Wells Fargo and U.S. Bank customers, all of whom have pledged to close their bank accounts. Hundreds of representatives from both communities will be on hand at Wells Fargo Center Friday afternoon.

They will be joined by a 1% vs. Democracy Rally and March, which will depart from Peavey Plaza at 2:30 to Wells Fargo Center, showing solidarity for the immigrant communities gathered. The rally and march is the culmination of a 99% Spring Week of Action organized by Minnesotans for a Fair Economy and partner organizations this week.

This event is being organized by the Somali Action Alliance, SEIU Local 26 and other allied partners; with support from Minnesotans for a Fair Economy.

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