NAR Expands Code of Ethics to Include Discriminatory Conduct and Hate Speech
November 16, 2020
During the social unrest throughout the nation in late spring and summer of 2020, NAR received an unprecedented number of complaints about REALTORS® posting discriminatory speech and conduct online, especially on social media. Local and state associations experienced a similar influx of these complaints. In light of this, Atlanta REALTORS® Association President Jennifer Pino wrote to NAR President Vince Malta requesting that NAR consider the Code of Ethics’ applicability to this type of speech and conduct.
On Friday, November 13th, The National Association of REALTORS®’ Board of Directors strengthened REALTORS®’ commitment to upholding fair housing ideals, approving a series of recommendations from NAR’s Professional Standards Committee that extend the application of Article 10 of the Code of Ethics to discriminatory speech and conduct outside of members’ real estate practices.
Article 10 prohibits REALTORS® from discriminating on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, national origin, sexual orientation, or gender identity in the provision of professional services and in employment practices. The Board approved a new Standard of Practice under the Article, 10-5, that states, “REALTORS® must not use harassing speech, hate speech, epithets, or slurs” against members of those protected classes.
The Board also approved a change to professional standards policy, expanding the Code of Ethics’ applicability to all of a REALTORS®’ activities, and added guidance to the Code of Ethics and Arbitration Manual to help professional standards hearing panels apply the new standard.
Finally, Directors approved a revision to the NAR Bylaws, expanding the definition of “public trust” to include all discrimination against the protected classes under Article 10 along with all fraud. Associations are required to share with the state real estate licensing authority final ethics decisions holding REALTORS® in violation of the Code of Ethics in instances involving real estate-related activities and transactions where there is reason to believe the public trust may have been violated.
The Board made these changes effective immediately, though the changes cannot be applied to speech or conduct that occurred before the effective date. NAR has produced training and resource materials to assist leaders with understanding and implementing the changes and will be rolling those out in the coming weeks.
Read more about NAR's additions to their Code of Ethics on their website here.
About the PBOR Market Brief
The Paulding Board of REALTORS® (PBOR) Market Brief is compiled by First Multiple Listing Service (FMLS). For more information on details of this month's report, please contact the Board at 770.866.1397.
*Each month, the numbers reported for the previous month are updated to reflect additional recordings.
About the Paulding Board of REALTORS®
The Paulding Board of REALTORS® (PBOR) has been an instrumental factor in the growth of real estate in Paulding County, Georgia for more than a decade. PBOR serves as a central source of information for its members, with mainly focusing on real estate education, the promotion of professionalism in the industry and representing REALTORS® members with legislative initiatives to create positive change for the real estate community.
About First Multiple Listing Service
First Multiple Listing Service (FMLS) is the premier data services provider for real estate professionals in Georgia. FMLS was founded in 1957 by a group of Brokers who wanted to share their listings and connect buyers and sellers. Today FMLS is the largest MLS in Georgia & the 4th largest MLS in the United States, serving nearly 54,000 real estate Agents & Brokers. For additional information or to start a discussion about how to partner with FMLS please contact email@example.com.