11 climate activists arrested for trespassing after protests at Chase banks

SEATTLE — Eleven climate activists were arrested for trespassing Monday after protesting at several downtown branches of Chase bank, police said.

The activists -- six men and five women -- will be booked into King County Jail, according to a blotter post.

The activists planned these protests for the company's financial involvement with fossil fuels, a press release from the organizing group said.

KIRO 7's Siemny Kim was there and will have a full report on the news at 5 p.m. 

"For nearly three years, we have been asking JPMorgan Chase to align its investments with the Paris Climate Agreement and stop its funding of climate-wrecking fossil fuels," said Alec Connon, an organizer with 350 Seattle, a climate justice group. "Not only has it failed to do that, but, even as the impacts of the climate crisis grow worse, Chase has dramatically increased its funding of the fossil fuel industry."

The protests happened at the following locations: Russel Investment Center, 1301 2nd Avenue; Pacific Place, 600 Pine Street, Suite 20; 1501 4th Avenue Suite 117; 1201 3rd Avenue.

Officers began receiving calls about the protesters occupying the lobbies of the banks earlier in the afternoon. Many of the demonstrators had left by the time police arrived, but several protesters at the 6th and Pine location and the 4th Avenue location "informed officers they wanted to be arrested," according to the blotter post. They were taken into custody after refusing to leave the premises, police said.

Chase provided KIRO 7 with this statement regarding the protests:

"Across our company we promote inclusive economic growth and opportunity in communities where we operate, and by 2023 we will invest $1.75 billion towards these efforts. We also work to advance environmental sustainability within our business activities and facilities. We recognize the complexity of climate change issues and actively engage with a diverse set of stakeholders to understand their views. We firmly believe that balancing environmental and social issues with financial considerations is fundamental to sound risk management."

A similar protest happened in Seattle back in April, also over Chase's funding of fossil fuels businesses.

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