LOS ANGELES (CBS) — Activists behind “Bank Transfer Day” are hoping tens of thousands of people on Saturday will voluntarily switch their money to not-for-profit credit unions.

KNX 1070’s Ed Mertz Reports

The movement was organized by former Bank of America customer Kristen Christian, who says she became frustrated when the bank tried to charge her a $5 debit card fee.

“It really did make me sick and instead of investing it back into the community to stimulate our economy, they’re choosing to distribute that wealth among a select few shareholders,” Christian said.

Although customer backlash stopped the fee, the Silver Lake artist says it was too little too late. She shared her idea of “Bank Transfer Day” with 500 Facebook friends.

“I put together some very basic info of the steps people would need to take,” she said.

Four weeks later, Christian has 7,300 supporters pledging to close accounts with big banks and take business to not-for-profit credit unions by this weekend.

“I was with Bank of America and the fees were tremendous,” said Nina Washington, a credit union customer.

Through social media, the movement has gained steam and struck a cord with customers apparently fed up with fees and frustrated by lack of loan funds from banks who received bailout money.

Phillip Denlea of Burbank’s Lockheed Federal Credit Union says business is up at least 50 percent from this time last year.

“Certainly a lot more volume… people coming from commercial banks, frankly because maybe they are fed up with some of the commercial fees and wanting to take advantage of what the credit union offers,” Denlea said.

Credit unions are not-for-profits and essentially work for the customers, not shareholders. But Bank of America has said they listened to customers concerns by cancelling the hike. The outcry prompted other banks to cancel tests of their own.

We tried to reach BofA for comment, but have not yet received a reply.

Serene Branson

Comments (21)
  1. proofreader says:

    Does anyone edit or proofread these articles? This is full of misspellings and lack of punctuation.

    1. Terrence says:

      And the grammar in the second sentence “when the bank tried to her charge a $5 debit card fee” is really bad. I guess this is what happens when you hire buffons.

      1. Jervis Hill says:


      2. Luis says:

        What’s wrong with the second sentence?? It’s fine.

      3. proofreader says:

        The grammar is fine; there’s just a word switch (“tried to CHARGE HER” is what it should be.)

      4. Gene Rodmy says:

        LOL. Buffons.

    2. Karen says:

      I just read it again and used to teach writing at a major university. There is nothing wrong with this article and I was just going to post it on my facebook page.

      1. proofreader says:

        There were many things wrong with this article. Someone must be reading these comments, because several mistakes have been corrected. Besides some missing commas, there are still mistakes in it: “struck a cord” (chord) and “customers concerns” is possessive and needs an apostrophe (customers’ concerns.)

  2. beeville says:

    She had her 15 minutes, now can she go away.

  3. PeteM says:

    I live in this neighbourhood and know how whacky and idiotic these people are! It would be far better if they all went on a hunger strike (forever) instead! Now that’s what I call a protest! We get rid of all the whiners in one go!

  4. PeteM says:

    What strikes me as odd is that they complain about having to pay a measly $60 a year extra for their banking, but don’t bat an eyelid when the Government and State take hundreds off them in taxes or is it billions when it comes to their illustrious leader stealing from them! These clowns will do and say anything to get their 5 seconds of fame!

  5. christina says:

    People are forgetting that Credit Unions charge fees too…

    1. Terrence says:

      My credit union does not charge me an ATM card fee.

  6. bounce says:

    Ironically, the proposed $5 per month fee for the use of debit cards that got her all upset has been dismissed by BofA.

    1. Luis says:

      Where’s the irony in that?

  7. JS says:

    You send your kids to school where they are told what to think and when to think it and become uncritical adults; you gladly enter into wage slavery in order to pay on loans for house, education, car… but a fee makes you cry, “viva la revolution!”. Uh kay. Beam me up, Scotty, there’s no intelligent life, down here.

  8. FFL says:

    Can you beam me up too Scotty? Intelligent life in LA ended when the County Bd of Supervisors and LA City council became owned and operated by dyed in the wool uber liberal democrats and this was decades ago…UTLA, SEIU and the rest are brainless whackos..

    I hope these protesters get exactly what they deserve NOT what they want, but DESERVE!

  9. USA1st says:

    Good, stave the banks. If you give your money to them, you are a fool.

  10. wain says:

    BofA listen to their customers. What a bunch of bull, i bet my shorts that rows of people were closing their accounts, We consumers need to band together and see if corporate America won’t listen.

  11. westanddivided says:

    the idea of not contributing to the bail-out banks seems right. The reality of it would actually hurt those who still use the banks, once again divided.

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