When Molly Katchpole found out that Bank of America would charge $5 a month to use a debit card, she was upset — so she started a petition on Change.org.
Since then, 225,000 Change.org members have signed her petition. And now Bank of America is under enormous pressure to cancel its new debit card fee. A Bank of America executive even called Molly and told her that while cancelling the fee would be “premature,” the bank was “closely monitoring customer feedback.” Really????
More public pressure could be enough to push the bank to cancel its new $5 debit card fee. You can click here to sign Molly’s Petition if you’d like.
In less than three weeks, Bank of America went from announcing a new $5 monthly debit card fee, to reeling under huge pressure from the media, Congress, and Change.org members. Here’s a quick review of what happened:
- September 29: Bank of America announces a new $5 monthly debit card fee.
- September 30: Molly creates her petition on Change.org; more than 150,000 people sign in the next 5 days.
- October 5: The petition becomes a major national story. ABC News interviews Molly, then tracks down Bank of America’s CEO Brian Moynihan and forces him to respond to it.
- October 6: Molly delivers 153,000 petitions to Bank of America and closes her account. She appears on ABC World News again to discuss the petition. Local media in Charlotte (where Bank of America is based) openly speculate that the growing controversy could lead to the firing of Moynihan.
- October 9: Molly is featured in a major article in the New York Times as an example of the public’s frustration with big banks.
- October 10: Bank of America executive Andrew Pepler calls Molly Katchpole to discuss her petition.
- October 13: Molly meets with Congressman Brad Miller to discuss a bill in Congress to make it easier to switch banks. The two later appear on CNN together.
- October 18: Molly’s petition reaches 225,000, as Bank of America reports a $6 billion profit. The outrage continues to grow.
- BOA began detaining OWS protesters who attempted to close their BOA accounts, calling in the Police and having them arrested.
Other banks are paying attention to the public reaction to Bank of America’s new debit card fee. Citibank even said its “customers made it abundantly clear” that they wouldn’t like a debit card fee.
What’s next in this campaign to cancel Bank of America’s $5 debit card fees? It’s up to you. Remember November 5th Bank Transfer Day.