HUD sponsored

NFHTA Forum | Bridging the Racial Homeownership Gap: Special Purpose Credit Programs


April 20, 2022 | 2:00 PM - 4:00 PM EDT




"...it is not the SPCP alone that helps to serve minority customers in communities. We leverage this program with a more holistic strategy, which is to ensure we have a diverse sales force so folks that mirror the markets that we are seeking to serve, that we create visibility and presence within those minority communities so that folks know that we are open for business as a lender. We also partner with key influencers in those communities...we have to work with partners such as Realtors, builders, nonprofit organizations, housing counseling organizations ...we also have to make sure that we are participating in marketing and outreaching efforts in these communities to dispel myths around homeownership, as well as build trust and consideration among a community that has traditionally been underserved by lenders. So, it's very important that we do all of those tactics and that they all work together so that we have an opportunity to create access to credit through our products and programs, which is inclusive of SPCP."

Cerita Battles Managing Director, Head of Community & Affordable Lending, JP Morgan Chase

Homeownership is the primary way American families build wealth and pass it on to the next generation. While the United States is known worldwide as the land of great opportunity, opportunities for homeownership have been deeply unequal in our country. Because of systemic discrimination in this nation's housing and credit markets, including by the federal government itself, homeownership rates are much lower for African Americans and other people of color than for their white counterparts. This was true in the 1960s before the Fair Housing Act became law, and it is even truer today.

The Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA) recognized Special Purpose Credit Programs (SPCP) as one mechanism that financial institutions can use to open the door to homeownership for underserved populations who have historically been denied that opportunity. SPCPs provide a tailored way to meet special social needs and benefit economically disadvantaged groups, including groups that share a common characteristic such as race, national origin, or gender. SPCPs can play a critical role in promoting equity and inclusion, building wealth, and removing systemic barriers that have contributed to financial inequities, housing instability, and residential segregation. SPCPs are also consistent with and provide a targeted and effective way to further the purposes of other civil rights laws, including the Fair Housing Act's twin goals of overcoming discrimination and segregation.

The National Fair Housing Training Academy (NFHTA) hosted a public forum that provided information about the need for SPCPs; described how an SPCP works to expand access to credit, and advance equity; outlined HUD and Consumer Financial Protections Bureau (CFPB) guidance on SPCPs; and described the industry perspective on opportunities and challenges to implementing SPCPs. Over 614 fair housing partners joined in this conversation.


  1. Welcome from moderator, Cashauna Hill, Executive Director at the Louisiana Fair Housing Action Center
  2. Opening remarks by Demetria McCain, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary, Office of Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity, HUD
  3. Introduction of panelists:
    • Sasha Samberg-Champion, Deputy General Counsel, Enforcement and Fair Housing, HUD
    • Frank Vespa-Papaleo, Principal Deputy Fair Lending Director, Consumer Protection Financial Bureau
    • Cerita Battles, Managing Director, Head of Community & Affordable Lending, JP Morgan Chase
  4. Presentation and discussion by panelists on:
    • HUD's Guidance on SPCPs
    • HUD's legal opinion on SPCPs
    • How SPCPs relates to fair housing practitioners' work
    • How SPCPs affirmatively further fair housing
    • CFPB's Guidance on SPCPs
    • How SPCPs expand equitable access to credit
    • How SPCPs promote racial and economic equity
    • Opportunities and challenges of implementing SPCPs
    • How SPCPs advance the goals of the Community Reinvestment Act
  5. Question and answer session moderated by Ms. Hill

A video of the forum has been posted on this page, along with a transcript of the conversation and a robust resources list for your continued reference.

Learning Objectives

  • Know more about the need for Special Purpose Credit Programs (SPCPs)
  • Describe an SPCP and how it works
  • Understand the guidance about SPCPs from HUD and CFPB
  • Recognize how SPCPs increase equitable access to credit
  • Understand how SPCPs impact fair housing practitioners' work and how SPCPs may be used to affirmatively further fair housing
  • Understand how SPCPs advance the goals of the Community Reinvestment Act


This forum was targeted to Fair Housing Initiatives Program (FHIP) organizations, Fair Housing Assistance Program (FHAP) agencies, HUD staff, legal services providers, housing providers, and other interested fair housing partners.


FHEO Remarks

Demetria McCain Bio

Demetria McCain

Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary
Office of Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity, HUD

Live Roundtable

Cashauna Hill Bio

Cashauna Hill

Executive Director
Louisiana Fair Housing Action Center


Michael Akinwumi, PhD Bio

Sasha Samberg-Champion

Deputy General Counsel, Fair Housing and Enforcement


SFrank Vespa-Papaleo Bio

Frank Vespa-Papaleo

Principal Deputy Fair Lending Director
Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB)


Cerita Battles Bio

Cerita Battles

Managing Director, Head of Community & Affordable Lending
JPMorgan Chase & Co.


About the Forums

Forums are online conversations designed to allow multi-directional interactions between HUD and its FHIP and FHAP partners around emerging fair housing issues regarding processing complaints, conducting investigations, and managing agencies. Topics will evolve based on partner needs and interests.

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Disclaimer: The National Fair Housing Forum webinar series provides training by and to HUD partners, including entities and persons participating in HUD's FHAP Program and FHIP Program. The series offers multidirectional idea sharing in real-time. The views offered by speakers and participants do not necessarily reflect HUD's views. Similarly, unless otherwise noted, documents provided as part of the webinar were created and maintained by other public and private organizations and may not reflect HUD's official position. HUD-produced guidance documents, except when based on statutory or regulatory authority or law, do not have the force and effect of law and are not meant to bind the public in any way. Such guidance documents are intended only to provide clarity to the public regarding existing requirements under the law or HUD policies. The information is not intended to provide legal advice to any individual or entity. Please refer to relevant laws and regulations and/or your own legal advisor before taking any action based on information appearing on this site or any site to which it may be linked. Some materials have been translated into languages other than English; slight variations may have resulted from the translation.

Tags: Fair Housing NFHTA