The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Fair Housing Assistance Program and the Patricia Roberts Harris National Fair Housing Training Academy will hold a free public seminar in Marina del Rey Monday, October 5th to help educate the public on mortgage lending issues and how to avoid foreclosure.

The agencies have announced a new education initiative to address fraudulent, predatory and unfair lending practices of some mortgage lenders. As part of the initiative, they are providing a series of public seminars in eight cities across the country.

John Trasvi“a, HUD assistant secretary for Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity, will officially launch the initiative at the Southern California kickoff event at 9 a.m. Monday, October 5th at the Marina del Rey Hotel, 13534 Bali Way in Marina del Rey. Spanish interpreters will be available for each seminar.

Seminar topics include Mortgage Lending Discrimination and Predatory Lending; Financial Aspects of Lending; Foreclosure Prevention; and Borrower/Buyer Beware.

“In order to combat discriminatory lending and fraud, community advocates must be armed with education, training, and strategies to help the public,” said Trasvi“a. “These seminars will allow participants to begin to obtain advice and, if necessary, file fair housing complaints.”

Percy Thomas, executive director of the Fair Housing Training Academy, added, “Education and training are the keys to preparing individuals and professionals to deal with the current lending crisis. I encourage both professionals in fair housing and individuals who are interested in the lending crisis to attend these trainings.”

Participants will receive practical, hands-on experience with the lending process, using actual loan documents and paperwork. All seminars are free and open to the public on a first-come first-serve basis.

Individuals, agencies or organizations interested in attending a lending seminar must register online at