For immediate release
December 3, 2007
UNITE HERE Launches Multi-State Campaign, Tells Consumers “Don’t Deposit at Countrywide”
NEW YORK, Dec. 3 – The labor union UNITE HERE launched a multi-state campaign today to encourage consumers not to deposit their savings at Countrywide Financial Corporation’s banks and financial centers. Consumers can find comprehensive information on the unfolding national mortgage crisis and Countrywide’s continuing role in it at www.dontdepositatcountrywide.info. UNITE HERE represents over 450,000 members in North America, with a tradition of consumer advocacy.
The “Don’t Deposit at Countrywide” campaign counters Countrywide’s aggressive efforts to attract deposits from individuals.
“We believe it is in the interest of consumers not to do business with Countrywide,” explains UNITE HERE Research Analyst Zakia Henderson-Brown.
Countrywide has been the subject of intense criticism and is a leading player in the subprime mortgage crisis affecting millions of homeowners. Countrywide has recently promised to grant relief to some borrowers, but many more are at risk of foreclosure, because their adjustable mortgage rates have recently risen.
“Putting your savings into a Countrywide account may help to shore up Countrywide’s lending operations,” Henderson-Brown continues. “But we say that Countrywide first needs to help those people that are most vulnerable to losing their homes.”
Countrywide Financial Corporation, the umbrella group that owns Countrywide Home Loans and Countrywide Bank, is the nation’s largest mortgage lender and the largest subprime lender. Countrywide’s rate of foreclosure increased 119 percent from October 2006 to October 2007. Additionally, its stock price plummeted 77 percent this year.
Because of its perceived risk, Countrywide has had trouble financing loans through the credit markets and is looking to consumer savings to increase its cash flow.
For more information on UNITE HERE’s “Don’t Deposit at Countrywide” campaign, the national mortgage crisis and Countrywide Financial Corporation’s role in it, visit www.dontdepositatcountrywide.info.