Bank Teller Refuses To Let Black Woman Withdraw From Her Own Account

A Black woman business owner in Connecticut spoke out after a bank teller refused to let her withdraw money from her own account. Gwen Samuel, who is the CEO and founder of the Connecticut Parents Union, an education advocacy organization, went to a branch of TD Bank in Southington, Connecticut a few weeks ago to withdraw just over $1,000 to pay a vendor when the teller refused. 

“I go inside, I had my TD Bank card and my license,” Samuel told FOX61 News. “They were cordial. I’m not even gonna say they were rude,” she added. 

After taking a while to comb through Samuel’s account information, the teller returned and reportedly told Samuel, “I don’t feel comfortable giving you the money.” Samuel said she replied that the bank had “just deposited the check yesterday,” showing where the verified check had cleared. 

The teller’s response shocked Samuel. 

“And she said, ‘Oh yeah, it cleared. The money is available. I just don’t feel comfortable giving it to you,” Samuel said, and added that the bank employee didn’t provide an explanation for why she felt that way. 

Samuel told WFSB TV that she was “so hurt” by the incident and she had to go to a different branch to get the money. 

According to a report by the Huffington Post, Samuel organized a demonstration this week to advocate for equality in policies at the bank. 

“Even though it happened to me, I don’t want anyone else to have the terrible experience,” Samuel said to WFSB. “I just want them to do better. I could pull my money. I could prove that point, but I could also prove that point by trying to work with them,” she added. 

TD spoke to Huffington Post in a statement that said the “security of our customers’ accounts is a top priority and we regret that the specific reasons why the transaction could not be completed may not have been explained to Ms. Samuel…” 

The statement continues, “We regret that Ms. Samuel did not have a positive experience, which is what we strive to provide, and that she did not receive a satisfactory explanation regarding her transaction.” 

According to HuffPost, a bank representative contacted Samuel on Tuesday (March 16) to discuss the incident and ways to go forward. 

“I mentioned diversity training, but not their typical training, because clearly it doesn’t work –– at least for this branch in Southington,” Samuel shared. “I did state I will get back to them on how I would like this issue to be resolved that promotes both unity and healing as well as accountability,” she said. 

Photo Credit: Getty Images

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