From Belvidere to Belleville, local governments locked arms with local REALTORS® to pass fair housing resolutions during Fair Housing Month in 2021.
Each year, April is recognized by Congress as Fair Housing Month in the United States to commemorate the passage of the Fair Housing Act in 1968. This year, the Illinois REALTORS® encouraged the passage of fair housing proclamations by local government bodies across the state.
Sue Miller, Illinois REALTORS® President and McHenry City Council Member remarked, “As a REALTOR® and local city council member, I have witnessed firsthand the power of partnership in our shared mission to affirmatively further the goals of the Fair Housing Act.” Across Illinois, REALTORS® staff and volunteers worked with local governments to promote the importance of Fair Housing through the passage of resolutions and proclamations. Photos of the outreach efforts and copies of the resolutions can be viewed in the gallery.
The Fair Housing Act originally recognized four protected classes: race, color, religion, and national origin. Sex was added as a protected class in 1974 followed by disability and familial status in 1988. The United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) website states that the purpose of the act is “to eliminate housing discrimination and create equal opportunity in every community so that every person can live free.” The State of Illinois and local governments have additional Fair Housing protections including pregnancy, ancestry, age, order of protection status, marital status, sexual orientation, gender-related identity, unfavorable military discharge, and criminal background.
“REALTORS® are respected community members, often holding local elected office. It is a natural fit to promote the importance of Fair Housing from the grassroots of city hall to the halls of Congress,” commented Jeff Baker, Illinois REALTORS® CEO.
All REALTORS® must abide by the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice which outline duties that REALTORS® have to clients and customers, the public, and other REALTORS®. Article 10 of the NAR Code of Ethics provides that, “REALTORS® shall not deny equal professional services to any person for reasons of race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, national origin, sexual orientation or gender identity.”
To find out more about Illinois REALTORS® fair housing initiatives, check out the resources at our Fair Housing page.