Remarks by Secretary Fudge at NAREB 2022 Annual Convention
For Seventy-Five Years, the National Association of Real Estate Brokers has been steadfast in its efforts to bring housing to all people in a professional and equitable way.
You have helped generations of Black people achieve the dream of homeownership, invest in their future, and build wealth.
Your commitment to the pursuit of “democracy in housing” has endured since your first meeting in the summer of 1947 – a time when “separate but equal” was the law of the land.
A time when discriminatory practices in housing were not only pervasive, they were normalized.
But the “First Realtists” knew that there was nothing normal about systemic inequality.
So, they got to work.
NAREB’s commitment to expanding housing access was critical to the formation of the Department of Housing and Urban Development, which I lead today.
Your fierce advocacy for equal housing opportunities helped secure the passage of the Fair Housing Act of 1968.
Your achievements are many and they are commendable.
Yet, you know, as I do, that now is not the time for complacency.
We cannot rest on our laurels when there is so much work to do.
We cannot rest when the gap between Black and White homeowners is bigger today than it was in 1968.
We cannot rest when Black people represent only 13 percent of the US population, but 40 percent of people experiencing homelessness.
When homes owned by Black people and other people of color are consistently valued lower than homes owned by White people, simply because of the color of their skin.
The Biden-Harris administration will not rest.
We are actively engaged in our work to advance racial equity, expand access to homeownership, and fully realize the promise of equal housing opportunities for all.
NAREB, as you look forward to the next 75 years, know that you have a partner in the Biden-Harris administration.
A partner that is dedicated to ensuring everyone has a fair shot at the American dream.
I am so glad that Alanna McCargo, President of Ginnie Mae, and Sandra Thompson, Director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency are joining you in-person at this year’s conference.
They are two of the most respected and knowledgeable people in the industry.
You are fortunate to have them.
NAREB, I wish you all the best.
Congratulations on 75 years of outstanding leadership!