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Wells Fargo Is Being Accused Of Denying Loans To Undocumented Students

The Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF) filed a lawsuit against Wells Fargo on Monday claiming that the bank illegally denied loans to applicants who are part of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.

DACA was created by an executive order signed by President Obama in 2012. It gives young immigrants who were brought here as small children and do not have legal status the opportunity to stay in the country, get Social Security numbers, obtain work permits, go to school and even apply for permission to leave and reenter the country.

DACA students are not eligible for federal financial aid.

One of the plaintiffs in the lawsuit is Mitzie Perez, a third-year undergrad student at the University of California, Riverside. Perez is not a citizen or permanent resident, but she has a Social Security number and work permit, which she obtained through DACA.

Perez turned to Wells Fargo to apply for a loan in August of 2016. She filled out the student loan application on the Wells Fargo website and met their requirements for identification, but when she disclosed that she is not a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, she was denied the loan. She went back to see what would happen if she changed her answer to “permanent resident alien” and got information about a student loan option as well as a note that read: “Based on the citizenship status you provided, a U.S. citizen cosigner will be required for this application.”

The lawsuit is seeking class-action status so it can include anyone in the United States since 2014 that was “denied the right to contract for a loan or other financial product by Wells Fargo because they were not U.S. citizens despite satisfying Wells Fargo’s Customer Identification Program (CIP) compliance.”

As for Wells Fargo, the fourth largest bank in the nation, they said in a statement that they are “disappointed” the plaintiffs prefer to sue “rather than work with us on solutions to help people realize their goals of higher education.”

This isn’t the first time Wells Fargo has come under fire. In 2015, the bank fired over 5,000 employees after discovering they were targeting Latino immigrants to create bogus accounts to meet target sales goals. And in December 2016, the city of Seattle introduced legislation to divest from Wells Fargo due to the bank’s investment in the controversial Dakota Access Pipeline; if successful, Seattle’s divestment will cost the bank $3 billion.


Click here to find out more about the discrimination lawsuit against Wells Fargo.

Hit the share button to let any potential plaintiffs know about the suit. 

Bruno Mars Is Slamming Down Those Who Say He Changed His Name Because He's Ashamed Of Being Latino

Entertainment

Bruno Mars Is Slamming Down Those Who Say He Changed His Name Because He’s Ashamed Of Being Latino

Singer Bruno Mars, born Peter Hernandez, has been the subject of rumors that he took his stage name because he’s not proud of his Puerto Rican heritage – but he’s setting the record straight. In a new interview with Latina magazine, he gets candid about what it’s been like growing up with multiple identities and the realities of being Latino.

“Growing up in Hawaii, there are not too many Puerto Ricans there,” Bruno said in the interview. “Because of my hair, they thought I was black and white.”

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TBT

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The 31-year-old is completely owning his legal name, Peter Hernandez, and his Puerto Rican heritage.

He says the insinuation that he changed his last name is insulting to him, especially considering he was named after his father.

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Mi Padre

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“My last name is Hernandez,” the singer said. “My father’s name is Pedrito Hernandez, and he’s a Puerto Rican pimp. There’s no denying that. My dad nicknamed me Bruno since I was 2 years old. The real story is: I was going to go by ‘Bruno,’ one name. Mars just kind of came [through] joking around because that sounds bigger than life. That was it, simple as that.” His dad was a pimp… Say what? Well, he definitely had style.

As you can see, Bruno resembles his dad a lot. He said his dad’s style and demeanor totally influenced him. That Latino flashy-yet-smooth aesthetic is very apparent in Bruno’s “24K Magic” video.


“He’s an old-school working musician, so that’s where the pinky rings come from, the patent-leather shoes, the suits, and the pompadour,” Mars said. “It all stems from watching my father. I remember at the time, me and my sisters would be a little embarrassed when he would take us to school in his big-ass Cadillac. No one had Cadillacs in Hawaii. But my dad would show up in some boat-looking Caddy wearing some silky shit, and we’d run out into the car as soon as possible. And here I am wearing the swap-meet gold, driving Cadillacs.” Swap-meet gold!? We love that!!

Growing up with a Puerto Rican/Jewish dad and a Filipino/Spanish mom, Bruno said his identity, although blurry at times, has always been intact. He’s now hoping to inspire others to own all of their racial and ethnic identities.

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Been trill

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“There are a lot of people who have this mixed background that are in this gray zone,” Bruno said. “A lot of people think, ‘This is awesome. You’re in this gray zone, so you can pass for whatever the hell you want.’ But it’s not like that at all. It’s actually the exact opposite.”

Bruno said that the universal sound in his music, which is influenced by Latin, soul, and hip-hop, is a reflection of his hope that people can relate to one another through their individual experiences.

“I hope people of color can look at me, and they know that everything they’re going through, I went through. I promise you.”

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Mars Has Landed #SB50

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Bruno said that his music isn’t aimed at one kind of demographic. “How are you going to tell me that this song that I’m writing is only going to be catered to Puerto Ricans or to white people or only Asian people?” Mars said. “How are you going to tell me that? My music is for anybody who wants to listen to it.”

That’s not all Bruno Mars had to say. Click here to head over to Latina to read more of his interview.

READ: 13 Celebs You Probably Didn’t Know Were Afro-Latino

What do you love about Bruno Mars? Share this story and comment below!

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