PHOTOS: What happened when I delivered a letter to my local Wells Fargo & Chase branch
Below, we share just a few of the many, many emails we received from MomsRising/MamásconPoder supporters today who participated in our nationwide action to deliver letters and baby toys or blankets to local Wells Fargo and Chase bank branches. The letters express outrage that these banks are financing Core Civic and Geo Group, two of the private prisons that profit from the painful, horrifying separation of families who are immigrants or refugees to the U.S. The toys and blankets represent the children who should be able to sleep safely at home with their families, but instead are wrongly subjected to horrific conditions -- enabled by Wells Fargo and Chase.
Our supporters found strength in taking action this way. We hope you also find yourself fired up and ready to speak out after reading their words!
I delivered the form letter, decorated with a dear little pink and white bib and a baby blue binky, plus my own short message, to an employee at my local branch office which whom my family did business since 1957 when it was Southeast Bank of Brevard. I was received warmly and came away feeling that she thinks like I do about the border situation and the many illegal moves WF has tried to get away with over the past several years which caused me to remove all accounts from their institution. She said there'd already been a LOT of changes and I asked that she lobby her administration to end their support of the companies making money from the ungodly situation on our border with Mexico. She promised to give the letter, baby items, and a good portion of my personal message to her manager. I know her; she will.
We parted with smiles all around :) Christine
Just returned from Wells Fargo! Mary, Wynnewood Branch, 9/26/18.
Keep up the good work.
I did go to the two local branches of chase and Wells Fargo. No bank managers available in either bank.... but hopefully they will receive letters. Apparently no other people have done this here. It was a great idea and I’m sorry that I didn’t have the bandwidth to get more folks together to do this. Next time!
Thank you for all you do
I went this morning they had no idea that this movement was taking place today. They did listen to me and read the letter, I have never taken a selfie.
I hope this helps create change!
Here’s a write up we did of our visit to Wells Fargo today. We are in Eagan, MN
Just tweeted this:
I just dropped off a letter to the Silver Spring, MD Wells Fargo calling on them to pull their money from for-profit prisons Geo and CoreCivic that separate and detain families. #FamiliesBelongTogether #BackersOfHate Join us! https://tinyurl.com/y843d96x
The manager said they didn’t know WF did this and would look into setting up an appointment.
I dropped a signed letter and a small doll at the local bank. I also wrote a note saying that I blame the president, Jeff Sessions, ICE and HHS for this. Wells Fargo should not be funding 'baby prisons'.
This was in Poughkeepsie. The employee was wary at first but warmed up and promised to give it to her manager tomorrow ..... after she read it because she was interested in knowing more.
I was friendly and explained my mission. I was very well received. I was thanked for being a loyal customer (since 1967!), and I was assured that the word would be passed along. I spoke to both a bank officer and a bank manager. An employee let me place the toy in the bulletproof receptacle so that he could take it. He agreed that the imprisoning of families was a terrible thing.
My one regret is that I didn’t take down their names.
It was a wonderful experience.
Went to Wells Fargo branch with two other people. We waited about 10 minutes to see the branch manager. Julie read Travis the on-line letter and we gave him our correspondence and children’s items. He seemed completely unaware of Wells Fargo’s funding of the for profit prisons.
- Diane, WI
I took the letter into my local branch (I am a customer) and they spoke to the manager over the phone and they said they could not accept the letter. I need to send it to the corporate office.
I stopped by my local Wells Fargo in Minneapolis to drop off the letter this afternoon. I ended up talking to the Service Manager. She was somewhat aware of the family separation policy that had taken place, but she was not familiar with the details, like the fact that the HHS/ICE had failed to keep track of which parents belonged to which children. So I was able to raise her awareness, and she was very receptive, and said that she would give my letter to the Branch Manager.
All in all, a very gratifying experience,
I went by our local Wells Fargo branch with the letter printed out in an envelope and spoke with one of the officers at a desk. I said that my husband and I have had an account with Wells Fargo for 21 years (true), that we recently found out that Wells Fargo was loaning money to two large for-profit prison corporations to build internment camps for families seeking asylum and children at the southern border, and that we are very upset that our money is being used that way. I was quite choked up. I gave her the letter and said that details were in it. She said that just the Assistant Branch Manager was in and took the letter to him. He did not want to see me. She returned and said that he would pass it on the right channel and that there is a channel for this. I said that I understood that she and the Assistant Manager are not personally responsible for this and to pass the letter up the line.
A selfie of me and the letter outside the bank is attached. I am 75 years old.
Thanks for putting this together.
It went well. The manager said I was the third person. He supported this completely and had passed these requests to the bank’s legal rep.
Emily and I stopped in to the 14th St. and 5th Ave. branch--they would not take our letters, unfortunately. Said we should approach Chase Media.
Vivia at 5th & 9th took both our letters and said she would get them to higher ups.
The branch manager at 5th Ave. & Lincoln Pl. took both our letters and was also nice, said he would send them along.
Bank managers both very polite but a bit bemused. Toy seemed to get them the most engaged.
The young man who greeted me assured me the envelope containing both items would be delivered to Branch Manager. He was interested in what the letter was about...in a good way.
I asked him if they'd received other such envelopes today and he was not aware if they had. I hope they did! It was easy to do and I felt good about doing it.
Thanks for being a part of this effort and for all that you do.
I went to the JPMorganChase branch in Spring Lake, MI.
The Financial Services Manager was going to his office, and was willing to listen, offered to carry the letter to the branch manager without being asked. A rubber ducky from my now-mid-40's kids went along.
Dear MomsRising...You are awesome ...thank you for all your guidance & support.
I printed off the copy of letter to Wells Fargo. I went to my local Ely ,MN Wells Fargo branch with a small children's book.
Yes I am a customer and I went today, Sept 26, in the afternoon. The tellers said that they do not know anything about this issue. They would not give it to the bank manager. They said I need to send it to the Corporate office.
I visited the local branch near my work and spoke with the branch manager. She was very courteous and took down my contact information. I was a little nervous but I did it! Glad I was able to contribute in this small way.
Dropped off the letters, no engagement. Left several copies outside the door too!
Dear MomsRising Team,
Thank you so much for organizing this action! It was a really great experience. I almost didn't do it because I didn't have access to a printer today to print the letter. Fortunately, I talked myself out of such a stupid thought and hand wrote a shortened version of the letter. It was actually a really wonderful thing to do because as I was writing the words, I was feeling the tragedy and urgency of the situation even more deeply. Holding the baby blankie I had bought at the dollar store, I found myself remembering for a moment what even one day without my mom was like when I was a child. I truly can't image what these families must be going through.
So often I feel powerless in the face of the horrors our country is facing these days, but this one small action gave me such an empowered feeling. It takes creativity to come up with an action that is both powerful AND very doable in the midst of a busy life. THANK YOU!
I got to hand my note and blankie to an employee. She was lovely. She immediately knew the context and said, genuinely, "I know, isn't it crazy [that WF is financing these corporations]. Thank you so much for doing this. I will not just take it to my regional manager; I'm going to figure out how to get it as high up as I can!"
Her response made it sound like no one else from the area had done this action today. That made realize that even one tiny person, with a few minutes and some good intentions, can actually have an impact. Many thanks for helping me experience that!
I did it. i took a letter to Chase and was able to talk to the manager but the wonderful thing was a consumer talked to me afterwards who worked in the prisons and was glad that something is being done about that. Chase would not take the gift I brought so I gave it to him with all the info. I hope he will email me so I can connect him to you.
The second place I went to was Wells Fargo and I videoed that branch as I cross the street and put it on Facebook.
Last night I took pictures of the letters and gift I was suppose to take to the banks. I wish I could have done this all day but you gave this to me a little late. My rule is the first one that gets me has me. A month ago that day was set up. But I knew I could get two done before my next meeting for justice.
Thank you for caring and thank you for not giving up.
Mason and I dropped off a letter and a toy for the Wells Fargo Managers in Centralia Washington today. They were all in the office so we got to meet them directly.
Hi all, dropped off in my local branch in my town and I had a very positive response. The bank manager even sat with me in his office to hear me out and said he would give the message to his higher ups without making any promises about outcome. He said he didn’t even know Wells Fargo was investing in these companies so it was news to him. He did say that Wells Fargo pushes forth values that include families so anything that doesn't fall in that should be brought up.
I delivered the letter which I signed and identified myself as a bank patron on September 25 at 1:15pm. The bank is the Watchung branch in Montclair, New Jersey. The bank manager was out so I handed the letter to the only teller present and I explained the contents of the letter. She smiled and said that she would give it to the manager.
I am not of the selfie generation and so I didn’t take a picture. Hopefully the message will be passed on to bank officers.
I explained what we were doing, then gave the letter and the book "Good Night Moon" to the young woman at the help desk at the Chase Bank in La Grange, IL. She was going to bring it to her manager.
I spoke with the manager of
Chase bank located on the UWS (Broadway & 96 St).
He was very receptive to my explanation and said he would pass my letter on. He knew nothing about this situation and is disturbed by the situation as I explained it.
I delivered the letter (and a small toy) to the branch manager in El Paso, TX.
They had not heard of this movement; they listened attentively as I discussed the painful separation of families, the warehousing of children and the immorality of it all. And I emphasized the disgusting fact that corporations that run the private prisons and detention facilities are profiting from the children’s misery. And, of course, that Chase is one of the banks that finance those private jail-keepers.
It went well. Folks at Wells Fargo seemed shocked and concerned, guy at Chase could care less.
Here’s our photos.
Thanks for organizing this great drive.
Hi, I dropped my letter off at the Wells Fargo branch at 8711 Georgia Ave in Silver Spring MD with a little help from my 7 week old son. I also tweeted this from @jennykno
I just dropped off a letter and my sons outgrown PJs to Wells Fargo in San Anselmo, CA. The greeter was very kind to me and said he would give it to the manager.
Thanks for organizing this!
At approx 11:30 am I brought my letter with a pacifier (no picture) to a Warwick Ny branch of Chase. They had no idea of what I was talking about. A teller accepted the letter and binky. There was no manager or assistant manager.
Just printed my letters and got addresses of 8 WF & JPMC locations in
Will be delivering later today!
Thank You, Heather
It was a good idea.
With some church friends, I stopped at two Wells Fargo banks.
The tellers were very friendly and promised to deliver the letter to the manager. The first teller said that the bank could not accept the teddy bear but that she could take it home for her daughter. I was pleased to pass on the stuffed animals my grandchildren had grown out of.
I'd like to know how many people made visits.
Hi! Here’s my delivery of the letter and a book at the Chase Bank in L.A.
I’m Marguerite Gorman from Boca Raton, FL and today I went to Wells Fargo, also in Boca Raton. I gave the letter and a small toy to the bank officer. I explained there are thousands of people like me who are unhappy with Wells Fargo’s role of financing the GEO group for private prisons and detention centers. I explained the toy is what a child might have to sleep with at night and in reality I explained this was actually a cat toy that a child might like to have as it rolled on the floor with a bell. The bank officer was very solemn and assured me he would give the letter to the bank manager. I put out my hand and shook his hand and thanked him for listening to me.
I delivered the letter and also a NYT op ed article "Migrant Children Used as Slaves" which gives many details of the grave deeds done by GEO Group and Corp Civic. I was listened to with patience but also puzzlement. Obviously I was the only person who had dropped by this branch of Wells Fargo,. They two women with whom I spoke promised to discuss what I had said with the bank manager.
I wanted to let you know that I went today to my local Wells Fargo and delivered my letter to the branch manager. We were able to talk briefly about why I was delivering the letter and a little about the coalition and our hope that Wells Fargo would stop supporting for-profit prisons and turn to “cleaner" investments. She said she would make sure the letter got to the right person.
My husband and I delivered letters/small stuffed animals to Wells Fargo and Chase this afternoon. The people in the bank were cordial and agreed to give the items to a bank manager.
We delivered our letter. The clerk was very kind and, I think, touched. Thanks for this action.
Erin & Auggie
Just dropped off my letter and lovey at a Wells Fargo in San Diego. It went fine—I left them with one of the bankers who was very young and very nice and said she’d deliver them to her manager.
Took my letter in with a request to pay off and close my Chase visa card. Teller was sweet as could be, and actually interested in the letter.
The letters were delivered this morning to the Branch Managers of the Wells Fargo branches in Herndon and Reston, VA. Both managers were courteous (and seemed sympathetic, too), respectful and professional.
Here are some pictures (including a bad selfie) pertaining to these letters as well as my cover letter.
I was happy to drop off the letter and a pacifier to a bank employee at my local Wells Fargo branch in Davis, CA. They were polite in receiving it, and said they would pass it along to the manager..
Thanks for the impetus for the action!
Hi - I know someone from the team saw my 5 posts on Twitter - 3 very nice branch managers, 2 nice tellers who would pass them on. All in Marin County/NorCal, 3 Novato 2 San Rafael.
Let me know if you need more info. Glad to be part of the outcry.
I followed your guidelines and went to the Wells Fargo in my area of Grosse Pointe, Michigan. I delivered the report and a pair of pacifiers to a gentleman at the front desk. I explained my reason for the visit and he graciously said he didn’t know about his company’s connection to CoreCivic and GeoGroup and their for-profit prisons for children and their families. He took both items and , from his sincere reaction, I do believe he would read the pages after I left.
I hope more moms have paid a visit today with their baby gifts and report.
Thank you for this good idea.
I explained my visit to an employee using the talking points provided. She informed me that her manager was in the branch & I was introduced. The bank manager is a very nice, professional young woman.
Stated she would forward the letter.
Lively discussion with bank officer. Officer was young. Took a while to get through to him we don’t need for-profit prison.
He got it at the end
The Wells Fargo Manager at our Wisconsin branch was absolutely shocked and speechless as I read the letter you drafted while we presented the letters and baby items to him. I asked the bank manager if he knew that his company was financing child prisons and he honestly replied he did not know. I believed him. This was one of the most powerful actions of resistance I have taken part of in the past 2 years.
At Wells Fargo I spoke to a bank representative who was very courteous and promised to give the letter to the appropriate person. At Chase, I spoke to the bank manager, who said it was the first time he had seen the letter and that he would be sure to get it to the right person.
In both cases it was clear they had no idea about their bank supporting Geo Group and CoreCivic or having anything to do with detentions. I told them that as a mother I was very concerned about this. I was impressed with their thoughtful reactions and felt that they had learned something new and I trust their superiors will too.
Thank you for organizing this action!
It went great. Tellers were very friendly and responsive. My son decided he wanted to do the 2nd bank!
Dear Nina and the other wonderful Moms of momsrising,
I am a 70 year old retired child psychiatrist and former Wells Fargo customer. I printed out the momsrising letter, adding my personal signature, and went to the local California Wells Fargo branch at about 4:30 pm today. Before going in I asked a woman approaching the door to take my picture. "Oh, you have a letter about the children," she said, and gladly took the picture. I told her now she'd done her part too.
Inside I asked to see the manager. There were two managers and both sat down with me and listened carefully as I expressed my concerns. They opened my letter and one said to the other, "Another one." I did not have a baby-related object, but saw a few beside the manager's desk. They listened intently as I explained my history with them, which includes closing all our accounts two years ago (after the scandal about staff pressured to open accounts and doing so without customers' knowledge). At that time I had also expressed concerned about Wells Fargo's investment in for-profit prisons.
I further explained that with the "Re-established 2018" campaign I'd hoped they had made needed changes and I could re-open accounts, but their continued support of the prisons wiped out that idea. Again, the managers were listening intently.
I don't have a Facebook account but you are free to use my picture to promote this good cause. Thanks for making it so easy to participate.
I went to the Wells Fargo branch at Solano Avenue in Berkeley CA with the letter and a cute little stuffed turtle help me. There was a concierge there (!) who asked how he could help me. I gave him the spiel and tried to give him the letter for the Manager, but he brought me the Manager instead. She listened respectfully and then asked me to sit at her desk while she entered all the information into a message to her management. She wouldn't accept the turtle because she was sending the letter electronically, but she was sympathetic about family imprisonment.
This afternoon I walked into my local Well Fargo Branch and gave the letter, along with a small stuffed animal, to a teller. I explained it, asked her to give it to the manager, and left. She accepted it politely. I forgot to take a picture.