Follow Up on New York Times Article
Hello Board of Directors:
As your president-elect and on behalf of the Leadership Team, I wanted to write you to address a New York Times article published today regarding NAR.
Allegations in this article are serious and very concerning. Let us be unequivocally clear: There is no place at NAR for discrimination, harassment or retaliation of any kind, whatsoever. Full stop.
NAR maintains several policies designed to deter and detect inappropriate and unlawful conduct and conducts regular anti-harassment trainings with its staff and key leadership. It’s important we all continue to urge staff and members to report concerns or situations through their available channels. We are concerned for any individual who believes they have experienced discrimination or harassment of any kind, and we want to hear from members and staff about their experiences so that we may respond and take appropriate action, as needed.
NAR fully investigates such allegations. In fact, if there is a claim against a Leadership Team member, we have brought in an outside investigator who has gone on record saying: I only work with clients who allow me to have control over an investigation, including witnesses interviewed, evidence gathered and conclusions reported from my findings. And I only work with clients who I find take my recommendations seriously and who I believe will take appropriate corrective action. Once an investigation is complete, we hold people accountable and take appropriate disciplinary action, as needed.
Consistent with our announcement of the Culture PAG, we also need to continue to reflect on what NAR is doing in everything related to these issues, including our communication, reporting and training. Is there more we could be doing to foster a better staff and member environment? We need to take a hard look at that, and we will.
While there are some critical facts missing from the story and important information that would add key perspective that we cannot share for reasons of confidentiality, the bottom line is that we acknowledge the people who have shared their stories and we are committed to continuing our efforts to foster a welcoming and positive environment.
For those known allegations cited in the article and reported to NAR, NAR or outside investigators had previously found the claims to be either validated, and we took action; or not violations of the law or our Code of Conduct (including based on more information than what you see in the story); or not true.
It is important to all of us at NAR, and to me, that we continue to build a culture of comradery, of inclusion and create a safe space for us to come together to do the good work we do. And that if or when an issue arises, you feel safe to know that you can say something without fear of retribution. Anything else is just not acceptable. Please see more from my presentation at Leadership Summit where I discuss our commitment to this here (beginning at the 0:50 minute mark).
Consistent with all this, and given we’ve been asked how you should respond to members, here are some key points:
The allegations in the article are very concerning, and NAR takes this very seriously. NAR is committed to providing a productive and welcoming environment that is free from discrimination, harassment and retaliation.
NAR maintains several policies designed to deter and detect inappropriate and unlawful conduct and conducts regular anti-harassment trainings with its staff and key leadership. For more information about all we do, you can go to: www.nar.realtor/about-nar/our-commitment-to-fostering-a-respectful-workplace. Additionally, NAR initiated a Culture Presidential Advisory Group to take a closer look at everything we’re doing and what more we could be doing.
Also know that NAR fully investigates complaints brought to our attention.
Please let me know if you have any questions.
Tracy Kasper, CRS, GRI, SFR, CIPS, C2EX, AHWD, BROKER, CEO
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Silverhawk Realty
National Association of REALTORS® President-Elect 2023