Should people who are tired of paying extra fees be allowed to close their bank accounts in protest? One Bank of America official reportedly doesn't think so.
According to Addicting Info, two women involved with the Occupy Santa Cruz movement in California walked into a Bank of America branch earlier this week and attempted to close their bank accounts. In response, the bank manager threatened to lock the doors and call the police on them. Her reasoning? You can't be a customer and a protester at the same time, the manager said.
Central Coast News contacted Bank of America about the incident and received a response from the company:
Central Coast News has contacted Bank of America to get their side of the story. In an email Colleen Haggerty with Bank of America released this statement to Central Coast News. "It is our responsibility to ensure a safe environment for customers to conduct financial transactions. So, due to the disruptive nature of protests lately and the potential for safety or security issues, we do not allow protestors inside of our banking centers. If a customer who is participating in a protest wishes to conduct bank business, including close an account, we ask them to come back when they are not protesting or they may also conduct their bank business at a nearby branch away from protest activities."
Haggerty also said that Bank of Ameica, "respect everyone's ability to exercise their first amendment rights, however we also have to balance safety and business needs for all customers."
According to Central Coast News, "The women said that they would return to Bank of America the next day, sans signs, and close their accounts taking their 'money away from the banking elite and into a local credit union.'"
WATCH VIDEO OF THE ENCOUNTER ABOVE