Project No One Leaves, a group that fights for people living in foreclosed properties, had planned a protest this afternoon in Indian Orchard, where a family faces losing its home. The 1,260-square-foot home, at 38 Seneca St., was scheduled to be auctioned off at 4 p.m. today.
According to a press release from the group, Noelia Ramos fell behind on her mortgage payments after being laid off from her job as a Springfield public school teacher in 2008 and was unable to negotiate a new payment plan with her lender. Project No One Leaves says Ramos lives at the house with her daughter and two-year-old granddaughter.
“How’s that for holiday spirit!” the group said in its announcement. “But we shouldn’t be surprised —the banks continue to leave are [sic] communities in shambles, destroy our homes and neighborhoods, all while they see increased profits, get trillions of dollars in federal bail out money and sit on $50 billion dollars allocated for helping rescue homeowners.”
Project No One Leaves, which began as a joint effort of the non-profit Boston Community Capital, the housing advocacy group City Life/Vida Urbana and a group of Harvard Law students, describes its mission as “to empower citizens living in foreclosed properties to protect their homes and communities through grassroots organizing, legal education, and civic engagement. We aim to bring together tenants and owners, students and neighbors, and individuals of all backgrounds to achieve this common purpose.”
Locally, the newly organized Springfield Bank Tenant Association and No One Leaves Coalition meet Tuesday evenings, from 6 to 8 p.m., at HAP Housing, 322 Main St., Springfield. (For information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.) The groups, say organizers, are “dedicated to standing up and fighting back against the banks to put an end to post-foreclosure evictions, displacement of our families and the destruction of our communities.”
In the case of the Ramos family, there has been at least a reprieve: today’s planned auction of their home has been postponed to Jan. 25, according to Bay State Auction, the company handling the sale.