Protestors mark year of OccupyMNby Matt Sepic, Minnesota Public Radio
MINNEAPOLIS — Several dozen OccupyMN protestors marked the anniversary of their movement Monday evening with a demonstration at Government Plaza.
Several dozen people marched to the Wells Fargo building to protest social inequality and what they say are heavy-handed tactics of big banks. The Occupy Wall Street protests started a year ago in New York's financial district and spread quickly across the country.
In Minneapolis, protestors say their biggest success was saving six homes from foreclosure.
Last year, Bobby Hull was underwater on his mortgage. If not for the Occupy movement, Hull said he would have been evicted from his house.
"We put pressure on the bank, and the bank didn't like the pressure. I had 14 senators tell me they couldn't do a darn thing to help us," Hull said. "The only thing they could advise us to do is stick with Occupy and protest and shame the bank. And they were right, it works."
Hull says his lender significantly reduced the principal on his mortgage.
Protestors, including Ty Moore, also spoke out against what they said is the high cost of student loans. Eleven years after graduation, Moore said he is deep in debt with student loans and cannot afford the payments with only a part-time job. Many young people are in the same situation, he said.
"It's a baristas-with-bachelor's generation," Moore said. "And you can't expect an 18-year old to know enough about macroeconomics when Alan Greenspan couldn't even predict what was going to happen.