'Day of action' brings calls for change to NAR’s doorstep
The NAR Accountability Project and its allies laid out their four-point plan during an event outside the organization’s Chicago headquarters on Monday.
A group of Realtors held a "day of action" today, demanding that the National Association of Realtors do more to address sexual harassment issues.
What happened: The NAR Accountability Project held a press conference outside NAR headquarters in Chicago. Organizer Jason Haber was joined by Illinois State Rep. Kelly Cassidy and Sharmili Majmudar of Women Employed to answer questions about the group's goals.
What do they want?: Haber said they've put together a four-point plan calling for:
An independent investigation
The removal of NAR CEO Bob Goldberg
The release of non-trade non-disclosure agreements of all former employees/independent contractors
A third-party human resources reporting system
"Now, the time for silence of women is over… it's time for change," Haber said, adding that in just two weeks they have built a coalition of more than 1,500 agents.
Why now?: The accountability project came about after the New York Times published an exposé on Aug. 26 detailing sexual harassment and a "culture of fear" at the organization. NAR President Kenny Parcell resigned soon after and was replaced by Tracy Kasper.
NAR's response: The organization respects the rights of those to protest and acknowledges that more needs to be done to ensure staff and members feel respected and valued, said NAR Spokesman Mantill Williams.
"We have engaged outside experts to evaluate our existing policies and protocols and help us establish new and better safeguards and procedures. We are evaluating the way volunteer leaders are selected, their roles and how they interact with association staff professionals," Williams said, adding a new Culture Transformation Commission is getting input from staff, members and associations to determine what other changes are needed.
"We are deeply committed to hearing from our staff and members and making meaningful and timely change," Williams said.