January 8, 2020 — The leadership of the National Association of REALTORS® met in Washington today where they unanimously passed a Fair Housing Action Plan which will distinguish NAR as a national industry leader on fair housing.
NAR re-organized last summer to create a new Fair Housing Policy Committee so NAR could more effectively advocate on national fair housing policy. NAR hired Bryan Greene as its Director of Fair Housing Policy. Bryan Greene served at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development for 29 years, where he was the top career official overseeing enforcement of the federal Fair Housing Act.
The recent New York Newsday investigation underscored the need for NAR to further ramp up and reinvigorate its fair housing commitment.
NAR’s new Fair Housing Action Plan, abbreviated ‘ACT,’ emphasizes (A)ccountability, (C)ulture Change, and (T)raining in order to ensure America’s 1.4 million Realtors® are doing everything possible to protect housing rights in America. Among other things, the plan specifically commits NAR to:
- Ensure that state licensing laws include effective fair-housing training requirements and hold real estate agents accountable to their fair housing obligations;
- Launch a Public-Service Announcement Campaign that reaffirm NAR’s commitment to fair housing, and how consumers can report problems;
- Integrate fair housing into all REALTOR® conferences and engagements (to include a fair housing theme throughout the May Midyear Meeting;
- Explore the creation of a voluntary self-testing program, in partnership with a fair housing organization, as a resource for brokers and others who want confidential reports on agent practices so they can address problems;
- Create more robust fair housing education, including unconscious-bias training, and education on how the actions of REALTORS® shape communities;
- Conduct a national study to determine what factors motivate discrimination in sales market;
- Profile leaders who exemplify the best fair housing practices and workplace diversity;
- Develop materials to help REALTORS® provide consumers with information on schools that avoids fair housing pitfalls.
Immediately following the passage of the new Fair Housing Action Plan at the leadership meeting today, the Leadership Team met with HUD Secretary Ben Carson, whom they briefed on the plan, and who agreed to join NAR in a joint public service campaign to advance our shared fair housing goals.