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News :: Human Rights : Organizing : Social Welfare
City Life/Vida Urbana Protests Fannie Mae
02 Sep 2011
City Life/Vida Urbana, a Boston-based housing rights organization, today held a protest in front of the downtown offices of Fannie Mae. About 60 protesters marched, chanted and held signs for over an hour. Several protesters entered the lobby in an attempt to confront Fannie Mae executives, but were turned away by security guards.
Fannie Mae, officially known as the Federal National Mortgage Association, is a government-controlled corporation created in 1938 to underwrite residential mortgages. In 2008, as part of the government bailout of major banks following the real estate collapse, trillions of dollars of bad mortgages were transferred to Fannie Mae's books. Many of these mortgages had been issued fraudulently to unqualified low-income buyers who did not understand the fine print, and who were subsequently blindsided by adjustable interest rates that skyrocketed after a short introductory period.

As a consequence, Fannie Mae is now foreclosing on thousands of homes. In other words, the same federal government whose lax regulation of lenders caused the financial collapse is kicking people out of their homes all over the country. City Life and other housing activists are demanding that Fannie Mae reduce the principal of their mortgages and allow foreclosed residents to pay rent or buy back their homes or buy back their homes at current market prices.

The protest ended calmly, with no police in evidence. City Life is also helping to organize the Right to the City Congress, three days of conferences and direct actions beginning September 29. (

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