By Ken A. Epstein
The protesters filled the lobby at Chase Bank at 51st and Broadway, calling on bank officers to halt the foreclosure of a West Oakland townhouse where a woman and her three children live.
In tune with the season, they sang reworded Christmas carols:
“On the first month of default, my true love sang to me, we lost all of our equity.”
Organized and supported by Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment (ACCE), the group came together to help occupy the home and support Gayla Newsome, who has been trying to negotiate with JP Morgan Chase and has yet to win a loan modifiction. Her home is located near 16th and Adeline.
Backers of the Dec. 17 bank action included young people from Occupy Oakland, Oakland teachers, AC Transit drivers and homeowners who are in the same boat as Newsome.
The stress has been taking its toll on the Newsome family, but the children and their mother remain strong and determined, said daughter Maiya Edgerly, 22, a student at Texas Southern University in Houston.
Though the family has since “reoccupied” the home, the children were evicted by the sheriff and a real estate agent while their mother was at work in Sunnyvale.
“Me and my younger sister, who was 14, were at home when they came to evict us,” she said. “We were in our pajamas, and we literally only had two minutes to get out.”
“They just put us out on the street. My mom made it back here form Sunnyvale in 35 minutes,” she said. “I understand that money and properties are important, but how can you just put out kids? They had no conscience. Who does that?”