PRESIDENT'S CORNER: Realtors Must Take Active Part in Fostering Diversity
Gail Fattizzi | June 2020
We were all shocked and appalled by the recent senseless killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis. No person should die as he did, regardless of race. Unfortunately, this is a pattern we’ve seen repeated too many times where the victim is a person of color.
People around the country are coming out en masse for peaceful protests. They are of every race, age and ethnicity. It’s about time. Time for change, time for America to forego apathy and take action to stem the racial injustice and inequality that has been allowed to exist for far too long.
Sadly, the media focuses too much attention on those who are not peaceful, who are taking advantage of this tragedy for their own gain. That accomplishes nothing, but instead just detracts from the voices calling for unity, justice, and equality.
As leaders in our businesses, our industry, and our communities, individually and collectively we need to set the example, and take an active part in the conversations. Not everyone will feel comfortable leading; that’s okay if at minimum you agree to listen with an open mind and heart, seeking to learn and understand.
Our HGAR membership is both diverse and inclusive. We have zero tolerance for discrimination in housing or in actions. I am proud to be a part of this organization. Our voices truly make a difference; we’ve seen that in the legislative arena, in matters of our industry, and in our communities. We know that we can make an impact; now is the time to do so.
Before the tragic death of Mr. Floyd, HGAR began the conversation around creating a Diversity Committee. As leaders, our entire Board of Directors made a commitment to advance this immediately. It is now that much more imperative to move it forward, and that process has begun. I challenge everyone to consider how they can contribute to this conversation in a way that will take us closer to a better understanding and the actions necessary for real and lasting change.
I hope that some of the caring and compassion we’ve shown to neighbors and strangers alike as we fought together against the coronavirus siege will be extended to those who are now suffering from the anguish, emotional distress and longtime scars of racial injustice.