I assume everyone is at least vaguely familiar with the latest immigration news, including the detention centers at the boarder and the stories of the conditions that children are being held under. Yesterday, employees from Wayfair, a Boston based online furniture sales company, walked out
in protest of Wayfair doing business with the companies that run these detention centers. A bunch of employees walking out may not really have much impact, though.
Today, however, Bank of America announced
they will no longer due any business with companies engaged in the private prison industry or running the immigration detention centers. They join JPMC and Wells Fargo who said a few months ago that they will not do business with companies running private prisons or detention centers. So, they are a little late to the party, but a 3rd big bank pulling out is going to add more pressure to both Trump administration and these companies in general.
I do not believe for one minute that Bank of America, JPMC or Wells Fargo made these decisions based on moral or altruistic reasons. I think they are reading the tea leaves and they have data that suggests involvement with these companies is going to result in a public backlash that will hurt their bottom line. That they are taking such public action makes me think that you are going to soon see a political switch on these issues. You are already seeing politicians on both sides of the aisle racing to do "something" after the picture of that drowned man and his toddler aged daughter trying to cross the Rio Grande river the other day. That, along with what's become public about the centers, is going to send people scrambling. Elected officials are likely going to see the same data that the big banks are seeing - the public doesn't like this. And, unfortunately for the Republicans, they are likely going to get most of the blame (despite these centers being created by Obama and his administration sending the exact same lawyers to make the exact same arguments in federal court about not needing to provide soap and showers to these children). But, I suspect we are going to see a big political shift on this soon. No idea what the outcome is going to be, but this is about to become a bigger issue. Bank (no pun intended) on it.