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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 29, 2007
Media Advisory: Washington to Celebrate Consumer Protection Week

Events include workshops for Spanish-speaking consumers, press conference

SEATTLE & SPOKANE – The Washington State Attorney General’s Office has teamed up with nonprofit organizations and government agencies to sponsor several events in conjunction with National Consumer Protection Week (Feb. 4-10).

WHAT: National Consumer Protection Week Activities including consumer workshops in South Seattle and a press conference in Spokane

WHEN/WHERE: Seattle and Spokane. See below for specific activities.

WHY: To educate consumers about their legal rights, how to avoid scams and make wise purchase decisions, and where to complain if something goes wrong.

  •  SEATTLE: Spanish-Language Consumer Workshops

Norma Chavez with the Attorney General’s Office Consumer Protection Division will conduct two different consumer workshops in Spanish on Feb. 2 and Feb. 9 at Centro de Informacíon Hispano, 8525 B 14th Ave. S (corner of Cloverdale St. and 14th Ave. S) in South Seattle. Both workshops begin at 6 p.m. and are free.

The Friday, Feb. 2, workshop will include information on scams such as wire transfer fraud, counterfeit check overpayment scams, foreign lotteries, and bogus sweepstakes.

The following Friday, Feb. 9, Chavez will provide advice to help consumers make smart financial decisions. Topics will include banking; establishing credit and repairing your credit record; and how to distinguish between predatory lending and a fair loan package. Loans and interest rates related to car and home purchases, college tuition and payday lenders will be covered.

Representatives from the Seattle Library will also be available to answer questions about programs and resources for immigrants and refugees.

Sponsors include Centro de Informacíon Hispano, the Seattle Library’s new South Park Branch and the Attorney General’s Office. Consumers can call Centro de Informacíon Hispano at 206-767-7445 for more information.

  •  SPOKANE: Press Conference

The U.S. Postal Service, Attorney General’s Office and Better Business Bureau have scheduled a joint press conference Feb. 5 in Spokane.

The Press conference will be hosted in the lobby of the main Post Office Building, 904 W. Riverside, from 11:30-noon. Identity theft prevention and education will be the focus.

BACKGROUND:

The theme of this year’s Consumer Protection Week is "Read up. Reach out. Be an Informed Consumer." The annual campaign highlights consumer education. For information, see the Federal Trade Commission’s Web site at www.ftc.gov/opa/2007/02/ncpw.shtm.

Organizers include the National Association of Attorneys General, Federal Trade Commission, Federal Information Center, U.S. Postal Service, U.S. Postal Inspection Service (USPIS), Federal Communications Commission, National Association of Consumer Agency Administrators, National Consumers League, AARP, Better Business Bureau (BBB), Call for Action, and Consumer Federation of America.

INTERVIEW OPPORTUNITIES AND STORY IDEAS:

The following sources within the Attorney General’s Office Consumer Protection Division are available for interviews and story ideas –

  • Latino consumer issues: Norma Chavez, Consumer Protection Division Communications Consultant, (509) 734-7143, bilingual
  • Jack Zurlini, Assistant Attorney General – Spokane office, (509) 458-3538
  • Rebecca Sears, Outreach and Education Manager, (206) 389-2140
  • Kristin Alexander, Public Information Officer, (206) 464-6432

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Media Contact: Kristin Alexander, Public Information Officer, (206) 464-6432

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