It was no ordinary morning. Police arrived at 4am and broke down the door to Alejandra Cruz’s (photo on right) family home with a battering ram. PNC Bank was trying to take her family’s Minneapolis home after a bank error, and their friends and neighbors were in the home to defend it. The police forced everyone to leave — but now Alejandra is fighting back to save her family’s home.
Alejandra’s family made every online payment on their home for seven years. But one month, PNC Bank didn’t withdraw it. Instead of admitting their error, they demanded two months’ payment as penalty.
Alejandra says there was no way her family could have come up with so much money on such short notice. So PNC put them into foreclosure and forced them to leave the house in 48 hours.
But now, Alejandra is fighting back. She’s started a petition asking PNC to sit down and negotiate — and this Thursday, she’s traveling to the the bank’s headquarters to deliver her message. It could decide the fate of her family’s home — and if thousands of people join her before then, she knows the bank won’t be able to ignore her message.
Alejandra says her family has worked incredibly hard to meet their mortgage payments. Her father worked two jobs, and she and her brother worked part time through school to help. The foreclosure has already forced them to move out of their home, and when friends and neighbors tried to stop the bank from taking the home, police arrested them.
But Alejandra knows there is hope. Just last week, another Minneapolis resident named Nick Espinosa started a Change.org petition to save his mom’s home. Thousands of people signed in a matter of days, and the bank was forced to back down and let Nick’s mom keep her home with a reduced mortgage.
Local media are already taking interest in her family’s battle, and if PNC Bank hears from thousands across the country right now, Alejandra is convinced they’ll decide to negotiate rather than face a public relations nightmare.
Thanks for being a change-maker,
Tim and the Change.org team