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VOICE in the News

  • Wed, 09/21/2011 : WAMU 88.5

    Prince William County has the highest rate of foreclosures in Virginia, and residents of one neighborhood who blame the foreclosure rate on the practice of 'robo-signing,' are demanding accountability from the banks and an investigation by state officials. At the height of the foreclosure crunch, approximately 25 percent of homes in the Georgetown South development in Manassas were foreclosed and vacant.

  • Tue, 09/20/2011 : Washington Post

    Lenders may have foreclosed on hundreds of homeowners in Prince William County, Manassas and Manassas Park using unreliable, “robo-signed” documents, according to a report by the group Virginians Organized for Interfaith Community Engagement.

  • Tue, 09/20/2011 : Channel 8 News

    Over the summer of 2011, a team of more than 30 VOICE citizen investigators conducted research into how the “robo-signing scandal” – a national news story profiled on 60 Minutes, in the Washington Post, the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and more – affected Prince William County, Manassas, & Manassas Park. In the jurisdiction with the most foreclosures in the state of Virginia (more than 16,000) and the 26th highest percentage of underwater properties in the United States (47.4%), these investigators uncovered clear patterns. Many of the documents filed with the Prince William Clerk of Court appeared to have been produced without proper oversight, to have been hurriedly signed and completed, and to be potentially fraudulent. VOICE found obviously mis-matched signatures from bank officials and notary publics; they also found that at least 45% of the documents they analyzed were produced at sites under federal, state, or national media investigation for robo-signing.

  • Tue, 09/20/2011 :

    The Georgetown South Community was built in the mid 1960s and was considered a standout neighborhood at the time. It was the first of its kind—row houses built in the likeness of Georgetown on the Potomac River.

    Fast forward several years; past the real estate crash and foreclosure crisis and that same neighborhood of 860 units has 75 vacant properties.

  • Mon, 08/22/2011 : Sun Gazette

    What started out as an effort to get a local bus route extended has turned into a growing sense of civic engagement.
    That was the view of the roughly 250 people who turned out at Greenbrier Baptist Church on Aug. 20, celebrating the upgraded service on Arlington Transit (ART) Route 45.

  • Sat, 08/20/2011 : News & Messenger

    Luis Lemus is more than just a college student and activist for Virginians Organized for Interfaith Community Engagement.

    He is also the spokesperson for families in Prince William County staring down the barrel of foreclosure thanks to potentially fraudulent practices associated with robo-signing.

  • Mon, 08/01/2011 : Nova News - Newsletter for Northern Virginia Dental Society Members

    VOICE, a local grassroots organization, recently attended our Northern Virginia Dental Society Executive Committee meeting. Their goal was to discuss ways to amplify the support for Northern Virginal Dental Clinic (NVDC). You may not be aware, but V.O.I.C.E. has been instrumental in getting funding for our clinic at Bailey's Crossroads. They secured commitments for a total of $100,000 from Fairfax County, Arlington County and Alexandria a couple years ago. They are now working to get funding of an equal amount for the new NVDC in Loudon.

  • Thu, 05/12/2011 : The Charlotte Observer

    Bank of America chief executive Brian Moynihan faced more complaints about his bank's handling of foreclosures at Wednesday's annual meeting, but shareholders rejected a proposal that called for an audit committee review of the mortgage business.


    The Rev. Clyde Ellis, a pastor from northern Virginia, said foreclosures have affected many from his congregation. One couple he knows has lost more than 70 percent of its income but was denied a loan modification, he said. Later, inside the annual meeting, Ellis spoke in favor of the shareholder proposal that called for an independent review of the bank's loan modification and foreclosure processes. "You just need to come to Prince William County - you'll see some disaster," Ellis told Moynihan, referencing an earlier comment about the bank's response to the earthquake and tsunami in Japan. "Sir, you've got to accept full responsibility for everything that has happened in this foreclosure situation."
    The bank CEO thanked him and promised to prioritize helping the county.

  • Mon, 04/11/2011 : Washington Post

    The nation’s lingering housing foreclosure mess is too often about folks with McMansion-size aspirations and duplex paychecks, granite counter appetites and laminate budgets.

    And when we hear that one of the nation’s hot spots for foreclosures is Prince William County, we nod knowingly, thinking of the vast tracts of huge new homes and the dreamers who drowned in them.

  • Mon, 03/21/2011 : Sun Gazette

    The county’s top elected official has pledged to solve a snafu that has left some residents of western Columbia Pike with few good options in getting to the county’s relocated Department of Human Services (DHS) headquarters for medical treatment and other services.

  • Wed, 12/22/2010 : Mount Vernon Voice

    All the residents of Lafayette Apartments on Harrison Lane want is
    a clean, safe place to live.

    Wednesday night, V.O.I.C.E. (Virginians Organized for Interfaith
    Community Engagement) hosted a meeting with residents and Lee
    Supervisor Jeff McKay to demand that the owners, Maine-based
    Eagle Point Management LLC, bring the property, which is
    financed by the Virginia Housing and Development Authority, up
    to code.

  • Fri, 12/17/2010 : Washington Hispanic

    Inquilinos del complejo de apartamentos Lafayette en Fairfax, Virginia atraviesan una difícil situación al tener que habitar viviendas en estados deplorables y enfrentar una continua inseguridad.

    Después de seis meses de reclamos y denunciar indiferencia por parte de la compañía propietaria Eagle Point con el apoyo de la organización V.O.I.C.E. lograron que el supervisor Jeff McKay visite los apartamentos y sea testigo de cómo están viviendo decenas de familias hispanas.

  • Thu, 10/07/2010 : News & Messenger

    The city captured the “State Neighborhood Youth Effort of the Year” for its national pilot “1 By Youth” project that took place on April 24 in the Georgetown South neighborhood.

  • Thu, 09/30/2010 : Alexandria Times

    Residents and ousted occupants of James Bland housing projects said they received justice Saturday after Alexandria Redevelopment and Housing Authority agreed to their demands for fair treatment.

  • Thu, 09/30/2010 : Alexandria Times

    The public housing residents of James Bland and their
    Old Town neighbors have provided a valuable lesson to the
    public. Feeling unfairly treated by their housing authority
    after they were given inadequate notice to move from their
    homes late last year, they decided to something about it.
    They organized — with the help of the interfaith organization
    VOICE — and went about achieving a solution pragmatically
    and effectively.

  • Thu, 09/30/2010 : Washington Post

    Current and former James Bland housing residents thanked the Alexandria City Council and the city's housing authority for resolving their relocation issues after a year of protests and meetings.

  • Tue, 07/06/2010 : Washington Post

    Advocates for uninsured Virginians say slow action from state and federal officials means that thousands of residents who could have received free dental care this summer will go unserved unless Congress intervenes.

  • Mon, 05/03/2010 : WRC (NBC) TV 4

    Residents and a community group have serious concerns about being moved during the redevelopment of the James Bland public housing development in Alexandria, Va.

  • Thu, 04/29/2010 : Mount Vernon Gazette

    Rising Hope UMC and VOICE (Virginians Organized for Interfaith Community Engagement) co-sponsored what was billed as a solidarity call for action on Sunday, April 25, to help immigrant youth in particular and immigrants in general.

    The focus of the gathering was to urge enactment of the pending federal legislation known as the DREAM Act that would provide a way for undocumented individuals to become legal residents.

  • Tue, 04/27/2010 :

    Last night, representatives of Virginians Organized For Interfaith Community Engagement walked out of a meeting with the Alexandria Redevelopment and Housing Authority Board. VOICE members gave the Board a week to respond to demands concerning the relocation of James Bland residents due to redevelopment.