African Americans move to support African American owned banks

Published: Jul. 15, 2016 at 9:46 PM CDT|Updated: Jul. 15, 2016 at 10:23 PM CDT
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MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - Organizers of "Operation Stand" are pushing thousands of African Americans to change their banks to ones owned by African Americans.

"It seems like once the protest and things took place in Memphis, it just brought everything more to the forefront," Autwaun Williams said.

Williams is one of the organizers spearheading "Operation Stand." He advocates a mass exodus from cooperate banks to local banks owned by African Americans.

"We total in the bottom percentage - black business loans. We're highest rejected," Williams said.

The group said they're fighting for equality when it comes to minorities' finances.

They believe corporate-owned banks are notorious for unfair lending practices towards people of color.

"If we could trust each other and patronize each other--we could run it," organizer Tito Porter said. "We won't need other people's opinions. We won't need other people's approval to move forward."

A group in Atlanta called for the same action. Atlanta media outlets report within one day more than 8,000 new accounts were opened at a black-owned bank.

Organizers said they are hoping Memphians would show the same support at Citizens Bank on Winchester Road by moving their accounts from big corporations into this locally owned black bank.

"We don't have anything against white people, corporate banks, small banks, or anything," Porter said. "What we're trying to get people to see, black people, you can do it on your own. You can get something without having to go to a corporate bank."

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