The month of June saw many Pride celebrations across the world, and here in Canada. While the month is coming to an end, CREA is dedicated to celebrating inclusion of LGBTQ2+* communities all year round. That’s why we’ve partnered with the LGBTQ+ Real Estate Alliance, to raise awareness of the challenges facing LGBTQ2+ home buyers and sellers, and formally join those supporting equal rights in real estate pursuits.
Our collaboration with the LGBTQ+ Real Estate Alliance stems from a central belief in our shared goals and principles. This partnership is part of CREA’s ongoing commitment to fostering a diverse, equitable, inclusive and anti-racist environment for employees, volunteers and members. CREA Chair, Cliff Stevenson emphasized, “We are excited to come together as champions of LGBTQ+ homeownership and provide learning, networking, and referral opportunities to our REALTOR® members across Canada.”
We recognize the important benefits strong communities have on the well-being of all Canadians, so it is only logical that we foster an environment where that sense of belonging encompasses all who seek it. Recently, CREA released a white paper citing the non-financial, societal benefits of homeownership, and we believe those should continue to extend beyond demographic differences, including where gender and sexual orientation are concerned. There are a diverse set of nuances to be aware of with any real estate transaction and understanding and appreciating those within the scope of LGBTQ2+ identifying people are imperative to a prosperous working relationship. “The rate of homeownership for members of the LGBTQ+ community is also below that of the general population; so, we need to understand the reasons for this anomaly and take corrective action. Members of the LGBTQ+ community deserve the same access to housing as other members of society,” says John King, an Ottawa broker, REALTOR®, and Alliance member in an interview with CREA Café.
The Alliance crafted their mission and vision by connecting the voices of real estate professionals and LGBTQ2+ identifying people to understand the specific challenges they face, and the barriers that impact the home buying journey. They launched in June 2020 and began accepting members and partners in October 2020. Since then they have grown to be a proud voice for inclusion and awareness within the real estate industry, primarily in the United States. Now, as our partnership extends their impact into Canada, John Thorpe, President of the LGBTQ+ Real Estate Alliance told us, “We are pleased to partner with CREA and expand our reach in Canada. We look forward to collaborating with CREA and their members, raising awareness of LGBTQ+ housing issues and fighting to eliminate discrimination as a barrier to homeownership across North America.”
CREA’s REALTOR® Code states a REALTOR® won’t deny professional services or be party to any plan to “discriminate against any person for reasons of race, national or ethnic origin, religion, colour, sex, family status, age, gender identity, or sexual orientation, marital status or disability.” So, it’s important that CREA and its employees, members, and volunteers come together to understand the meaning of being an ally, and to follow-through on that understanding with activism.
To learn more about how you can show your support in the every-day ways that matter, you can check out their resources, or join The Alliance.
*CREA uses to the acronym LGBTQ2+ to recognize the two-spirit community.