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Fight builds against foreclosures

Victory for Rosemary Williams

by staff |
July 24, 2009
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Crowd of people on porch of foreclosed home.
Rosemary Williams (center, in blue) at victory press conference. (Fight Back! News/Kim DeFranco)
Man talking at protest on porch of foreclosed house
Mick Kelly, of MN People's Bailout Coalition speaking at victory press conference. Kelly stated "The people make history and this victory was possible only because so many of us stood up to foreclosures and evictions. I salute Rosemary Williams and a salute all of you who made this success possible."

Minneapolis, MN - The Hennepin County Sheriff's officers knocked on the door of Rosemary Williams on July 24, at 9:15 a.m. They handed her an eviction notice, stating that she and her family (including two grandbabies) had to be out of the house by Monday. Ms. Williams, along with the MN Coalition for People's Bailout the MN Poor People's Economic Human Rights Campaign were already prepared with a press conference to announce plans to resist the eviction.

Twenty minutes before the press conference, Ms. Williams got a phone call from Minneapolis City Councilmember Elizabeth Glidden. Word came through that a buyer had been found for the house and that Ms. Williams could get a chance to lease her home with an option to buy it outright. In any case, the sheriffs were called off. And Rosemary Williams stays in her home.

“This victory shows that when you fight back, you can win,” said Linden Gawboy, of the MN Coalition for a People's Bailout. “Rosemary has lit the path for millions of others in this country. Stay, stay, stay. Never give up. Our communities depend on us staying.”

Cheri Honkala, of the MN Poor People's Economic Human Rights Campaign stated, “Rosemary's victory proves the strength of people's power. Through a unified struggle made up of directly affected people and allies, mega-corporations like GMAC have run scared. Rosemary has won.”

Rosemary Williams has lived on the same block in South Minneapolis for 55 years. Since she began her fight against foreclosures, she has been speaking not just for herself, but for all others in the same situation. She has testified at the legislature, before the city council and attempted a ground-breaking court case to save her home. She is a heroic example to everyone that taking a stand can have results.

“This is what happens when organizations and community come together and work collectively,” said Williams. “I just want to encourage everyone to not just leave in the night like they want you to. Fight for what is yours.”