On Saturday August 26, 2023, New York Times Reporter Debra Kamin broke the story about sexual harassment at NAR. Here’s the press release concerning the story along with a link where you can read the entire report.
The New York Times’s Debra Kamin reports: The powerful National Association of Realtors (N.A.R.) has ignored sexual harassment complaints, including those against the group’s president, Kevin Parcell.
Debra Kamin spoke to more than 25 members about complaints of sexual harassment, discrimination, and retribution by Mr. Parcell and other N.A.R. leaders.
For more than 100 years, the American housing industry has been dominated by N.A.R., which has 1.5 million dues-paying members, 66% women, making it the largest professional organization in the country, controlling access to nearly every American home listing and owning the trademark to the word “Realtor.”
Despite the organization’s size and reach, employees and Realtors interviewed by The Times criticized its leadership as a tight circle of allies who deflected wrongdoing and punished those who complain. Sixteen of the allegations examined by The Times of either sexual harassment or an abusive culture involved Mr. Parcell, which several women described as a boss who crossed lines.
From the story:
- One woman said the man put his hands down his pants in front of her. Another woman said the same man texted her a picture of his crotch. A third woman said she had a consensual relationship with the man, only to have him retaliate after it ended.
- “There is the sexual harassment, and then woven into it, this culture of fear,” said Stephanie Quinn, the organization’s former director of business meetings and events, who worked at N.A.R. for more than a decade.
- Many women who brought concerns to N.A.R. said that the response from leaders discouraged them from ever speaking up again about harassment inside the organization.
- Nineteen women who worked at or were active in N.A.R. or its affiliates told The Times in interviews that they had endured sexual harassment on the job.
- Another 10 said they were subjected to a sexist, belittling culture.
Click here to read the complete investigation.
As this story has continued to unfurl at lightning speed, I still must wait on my editors at Inman for their editorial comments before I can share those columns with you. Next week there will be a special edition with at least two articles documenting the unbelievable events that are taking place even as you read this column.