*CHARLOTTE – A local successful Charlotte Black business is claiming discrimination by a local Wells Fargo Branch in the Tega Clay area near Fort Mill, South Carolina just months after the national bank settled similar race-related discrimination charges.
Santone and Tara Allen own the Southeastern Services of the Carolinas, L.L.C. business in the Queen city. They claim that representatives of the bank repeatedly harassed them for hours in denying their right to take money from a bank account.
This news comes on the heels of Wells Fargo settling several multi-million dollar claims of discrimination by customers, employees, financial advisors and others.
“We were repeatedly told at the branch that we did not have the right to take money we earned from our own account,” said Santone Allen, who says of his experience with the specific branch located near Tega Cay. “I then sat for hours in a branch waiting for someone to explain the problem and still do not have answers.”
“Then when a white person went in the branch with the very same request, they allowed him to get the funds out in minutes,” Mr. Allen added.
Attorney James L. Walker, Jr. is representing the Allen Family and expressed outrage that the bank cannot seemingly stop its external and internal discriminatory practices.
“They have paid out well over $50 million dollars in the past four years, yet they still engage in the unfair, discriminatory treatment of African-Americans and minorities,” Walker said, citing the recently 2017 settlement of a $35 million case of discrimination involving the bank and several other lawsuits. (See here.)
Walker pointed out that cases ranging from $35 million in one Chicago matter, another $8 million in another case involving the bank and several million in a recent third case all show the bank has a serious issue regarding race. (See here.) Also, see Wells Fargo accused of discrimination of black customers in home mortgages.
“When will they learn that you cannot discriminate against Black customers, Black businesses, Black home buyers or even your own Black employees,” Walker asked. “We plan to deal with this swiftly and stop this horrific treatment for this family and all families of color.”
The Charlotte couple are very successful and employ a number of people with their businesses. They said they often have to drive across town to get a check cashed or wait for countless bank officials to falsely claim why they cannot make a withdrawal.
“It is so painful to deal with a situation where you cannot get treated like everyone else,” said Tara Allen, mother of five, who helps her husband run the business.
“My family and I are so humiliated and disgusted by this treatment,” said Tara Allen. “We should never have been treated this way and no one has explained “Why?”
“We have filed a complaint with the bank and sent them a certified notice of demand,” said Walker, who along with North Carolina Attorney Renorda is also calling on the bank to review its policies and plans.
The couple through their attorneys are asking for Wells Fargo to further investigate and discuss these potentially discriminating allegations, diversity and conflict resolution training, updating the corporation policy as it relates to customer conflicts, and finally an apology for our client who have been deeply humiliated by this matter.
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