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art by Favianna Rodriguez

Art by Favianna Rodriguez

“ You cannot uneducate the person who has learned to read. You cannot humiliate the person who feels pride. You cannot oppress the people who are not afraid anymore. ” – César Chávez, UFW


June 30, 2016

Statement from Presente.org’s Managing Director, Matt Nelson:

"While much remains to be done, this is an important victory for Latinx homeowners and others impacted by the predatory practices of big Wall Street banks and it wouldn’t have happened without fierce and courageous advocacy — including from thousands of Presente.org members — that challenged and held accountable a prominent Latino leader. Now, more than ever, government and private sector leaders must be aggressively held accountable to the interests of Latinxs, Black, and other marginalized communities. We know from experience that if we do not demand this accountability, our interests will not be represented. We also know that when we do advocate for our interests — directly, forcefully, and persistently — we can achieve great progress."

“Our efforts to shine a spotlight on Secretary Castro and demand change at HUD made us the subject of attacks and smears questioning our motives and our identity as a Latinx advocacy organization. This victory shows that our strategy was effective and has resulted in policy that will better protect Latino homeowners, rather than allowing Wall Street to extract our wealth and accelerate foreclosures, displacement, and gentrification that destroys our communities.”

"Our campaign worked. It was the right strategy at the right time. We took a lot of heat. But it was worth it. We applaud Secretary Castro for being an accountable leader and responding to the voices of our members and others who demanded that HUD stop selling our homes to Wall Street."

The changes HUD announced are listed here. In April 2016, Presente.org and a coalition of 11 housing advocacy, progressive, and community organizations organized a campaign at DontSellOurHomesToWallStreet.org calling on Sec. Julian Castro to institute urgent reforms to HUD's mortgage sales. The petition gained more than 117,000 signatures urging that loans be sold to nonprofit and mission-driven organizations and qualified buyers meeting higher standards.

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Presente.org is the nation’s largest online Latino organizing group; advancing social justice with technology, media, and culture.