At noon on May 6, a small but determined group of residents gathered in downtown Lexington, KY next to the JP Morgan Chase office tower on the corner of Main at Martin Luther King to sign and deliver letters asking Chase to divest from companies that practice Mountaintop Removal (MTR) coal mining. A group of bike cops and Chase security had also gathered outside the main entrance at 12 sharp — they must have gotten the Facebook invite.
After signing their letters, the protesters walked into the bank and delivered them to bank employees. Outside, some held up signs that read “Chase: Stop Funding Mountaintop Removal!”, expressing their disgust that one of the world’s largest banks continues to provide financing for companies that are destroying the mountain communities of Eastern Kentucky for profit. Others engaged bystanders in conversation about the devastating effects strip mining has on our watersheds and the health of the people who live downstream.
Having delivered their own letters, the protesters stood outside the entrance, handing out pamphlets to Chase customers and asking passersby to sign letters. The protest was polite and orderly and experienced no intervention from the police or security guards. After a couple hours of receiving dozens of letters one by one, bank employees expressed that the point had been made.