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Bank Refuses To Cash Black Female Architect's Check
What do you think about how the bank reacted?
Ashley Brewer
10.04.17

It’s 2017, and yet racism and discrimination are still very serious issues today. Just ask Trish Doolin — a black female architect.

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Doolin (now McIntosh) is a job captain of architecture at a design firm in Seattle called Nelson, Inc. She had only lived in the area for a few weeks, as she was originally from Kansas City, Missouri. Doolin’s direct deposit hadn’t been set up at work yet, so she needed to go to the bank to deposit her paycheck.

“I went in, deposited my check, and went about my day,” she told Buzzfeed

A few minutes after leaving KeyBank, she received a phone call — it was the bank. The banker told her there was a problem with her check and she needed to return.

When Doolin arrived, a banker named Thor Loberg took her into a cubicle. As she sat down, she noticed her design firm’s website was pulled up on his screen.

“He asked my profession, and then asked why the company’s headquarters were in Philadelphia,” she said. “Then he asked if HR could verify that I was an employee there.”

While he was dialing her company’s human resources department, he assured Doolin that this was just for “bank safety.” At no point did the banker actually ask for her identification.

The HR department didn’t answer the phone, so Loberg explained to her that since her account had been open for less than 30 days, they would need to put a hold on her check for nine days in order to verify the funds.

“When I realized that I was defending who I was, trying to prove to someone I didn’t know who I was, I knew I was being discriminated against,” she said. “It was just completely demeaning.”

Doolin returned home and decided to call the KeyBank branch to complain. “He would have done that to any other customer,” was the bank’s reply. “I can assure he is far from racist.”

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Doolin was eventually able to convince the woman on the phone to release her funds because it turns out, her account had been open for 29 days — just one day shy of their policy.

To add insult to injury, the woman on the phone told Doolin she was sorry that she was ‘having a bad day’ and to ‘go have a drink or something.’ Doolin was appalled and frustrated. Sadly — this is the reality that the female black architect lives in.

“I live in a world where, no matter what’s in my brain or purse, no matter how I wear my hair, no matter how fabulous I look when I walk out the door, I’m still black,” she said. “People still clutch their purses when I walk past.”

Doolin took to Facebook after her experience at KeyBank — she wanted to make sure people heard her story. The post read:

“When you deposit your paycheck at 9am.

When you get in your car and get a call back from the bank manager at 915am.

When the manager thinks your check is fake…

When he pulls you into an office and asks you to take a seat.

When he googles your company and asks why the corporate office is in Philadelphia.

When he calls HR to verify that you’re employed.

When he asks for your desk number.

When he asks what you do.

When he asks where is PNC Bank.

When you want to jump on his desk and scream.

When you just want to cry.

When HR doesnt answer to confirm your identify from Philadelphia.

When you have ID.

When he says they will hold my check for 9 days “to be safe”.

When banking while Black at KeyBank”

The full Facebook post is below. Doolin also says she’ll definitely be switching banks.

Please SHARE this with your friends and family.

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By Ashley Brewer
hi@sbly.com
Ashley Brewer is a contributor at SBLY Media.
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