Petition beats Bank of America’s debit card fee
Summary of story from The Guardian, November 2, 2011
When Bank of America proposed a steep new fee this summer, they made an enemy out of Molly Katchpole.
The bank had planned on charging customers $5 a month for the use of their debit card in a bid to make up revenue lost to a law that slashes the fees they charge retailers when consumers swipe their cards.
But 22 year-old Ms Katchpole started an online petition on Change.org, a campaigning website, calling for Bank of America to drop the new fee, knowing that if they got away with charging it, so would other banks.
“I was angry that Bank of America decided to set its sights on my meager checking account to pad its profits and pay out huge bonuses to the very folks who wrecked the economy in the first place,” she explained.
Her petition proved widely successful and soon had over 300,000 signatories. And Brian Moynihan, Bank of America’s CEO, was forced to answer questions on television.
Other big banks that had considered similar fees changed their plans.
And yesterday Bank of America dropped its plans for the $5 fee.
A delighted Ms Katchpole claims she will never keep her money in a major bank again, opting instead for a community bank.
She said: “Regular people can take on the most powerful of institutions. With enough determination, we can, against all odds, make a difference.”