Stop the Sheriff Sale & Solve US Bank Liens to Protect Community Land

Join us on Tuesday, January 4 in calling on Mayor Kenney to take immediate action to protect community land in Philadelphia.

We are urging the Mayor to buy back ALL of the US Bank liens. Until then, we urge him to immediately stop the predatory online Sheriff Sales, including the sale scheduled for January 6.

Read Ebony Griffin’s (Public Interest Law Center Staff Attorney) Inquirer Opinion piece: To protect green space threatened by U.S. Bank liens, immediate action must be taken for more information.

In 1997, the City of Philadelphia sold off 33,000 properties to a private lien holder and are now owned by US Bank. These lots are stuck in limbo- only wealthy developers can afford attorney fees to settle the liens and acquire the lots. The lots encumbered with US Bank liens are now being sold rapidly at the City’s Sheriff Sale, a predatory online process for selling “vacant land.”

The US Bank liens have allowed for the undemocratic practices to serve the few at the expense of the many loyal Philadelphians who have served their communities through maintaining green spaces for kids to play in and neighbors to gather and grow in.

We were able to halt the sales of US Bank lien lots this fall through canvassing the affected lots and protesting at the Sheriff’s Office. The Sheriff re-listed these lots for their January and February sales. The next Sheriff Sale is January 6, just days away.

You can try Mayor Kenney at (215) 686-2181, and if that doesn’t work, the Chief of Staff at (215) 686-7508.  You can call Council President Clarke at 215-686-3442 or 215-686-3443. You can also email Mayor Kenney through this form.

Call Script: “Hello, my name is ___ I live at ___ and I’m urging you to buy back ALL of the US Bank Liens to protect side yards, community gardens and open spaces. Putting these ~2,000 lots in the Land Bank would be an important step towards community control of our neighborhoods, while selling them to the highest bidder only increases gentrification. Until then, I am calling on you to immediately end the predatory Sheriff Sales, including the sale scheduled for this Thursday January 6.”

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