Activists from Occupy Wall Street, the environmental movement and labor unions, along with victims of home foreclosures, have begun massive demonstrations at Bank of America's shareholder meeting in Charlotte, N.C., on Wednesday morning.
(Above, video from Wednesday's protests)
Occupiers have characterized the event as a test run for activism ahead of September's Democratic National Convention, and expect more than a thousand protesters for a full day of marches and direct-action demonstrations both inside and outside the shareholder meeting. For those gathered, Bank of America has become the quintessential culprit for the Great Recession -- a bailed-out bank with a bad record on foreclosures and the environment.
Inside the Bank of America meeting, disgruntled shareholders -- including Trillium Asset Management, the City of New York and the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees -- will force votes on proposals that would curb the bank's political spending and force it to review its foreclosure practices. Foreclosure victims are hoping to give testimony during the meeting.
Outside the meeting, protesters promise a boisterous slate of events to draw attention to Bank of America's relationship with the federal government, the coal industry and its long record of foreclosure abuse. Occupy Atlanta's Tim Franzen said there are three marches planned, each with its own theme: the bank's environmental record, the housing crisis and corporate accountability issues. The marches will converge into one big protest.
Scroll down to follow the latest developments from Charlotte in the live blog below.