One of Occupy Wall Street’s enduring legacies is the Occupy Our Homes movement that successfully managed to protect families from evictions at a time when not even the government of the United States seemed overly concerned with an epidemic of foreclosures.
In February, Helen Bailey, the 78-year-old former civil rights activist who was threatened with foreclosure by J.P. Morgan Chase while the company trumpeted its efforts to uphold Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy, was able to stay in her home following a successful campaign by Occupy Nashville.
A Detroit husband and wife who spent months worrying they could be evicted from their home of twenty-two years received the news that they would be permitted to stay after an aggressive campaign that was led by members of Moratorium Now, Occupy Detroit and Homes Before Banks and included the family’s supporters blocking the contractor from placing the dumpster.
Occupy Atlanta prevented the eviction of a family when two dozen protesters encamped on the family’s lawn, and Occupy Our Homes delayed another foreclosure in Rochester, as did Occupy Cleveland in November.
And the list goes on.
These kinds of Occupy victories used to receive a fair amount of news coverage, though never at the same level as the more dramatic aspects of the movement, such as violent camp evictions and mass arrests. However, as of late, the work done by Occupy Our Homes has almost entirely dropped off the media radar.
“VICTORY: Monique White Wins Negotiation to Save Her Home!”, “A Victory for Lesliane Bouchard”, “Minneapolis: Homeowner Demands—and Gets—Meeting with CEO of Bank Foreclosing on Her Home”, the Occupy Our Homes website declares, and yet, barring any local coverage of these stories, Occupy’s victories have for the most part gone untold.
Not only have Occupy’s successfully thwarted evictions gone unreported, but the establishment media has more or less completely lost interest in the ongoing epidemic of foreclosures. Just as Occupy is no longer shiny and new and exciting, so too have the images of families being ousted from their homes of decades grown tiresome and repetitive and, like, totally depressing.
In Atlanta, a Dekalb County sheriff evicted a four-generation family, which had been occupying its home, in a 3 am raid earlier this week. Christine Frazer, a widow who lost her job in 2009 and lived in her home for eighteen years, shared her story with Occupy Our Homes: