For Immediate Release:
Ashley White, Equal Rights Center, 202.370.3204
EQUAL RIGHTS CENTER AND JBG PROPERTIES, INC., COLLABORATE TO INCREASE ACCESSIBLE HOUSING FOR PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES
ERC head Don Kahl to retire after serving six years as Executive Director
WASHINGTON, D.C., September 24, 2012 The Equal Rights Center (ERC), JBG Properties Inc., and several related entities (JBG), announced today a joint agreement to work together to increase the supply of accessible housing for people with disabilities. With this agreement, the Chevy Chase-based real estate developer JBG becomes the 12th member of the ERC’s Multifamily Housing Resource Program (MHRP), making a 10-year commitment to work collaboratively with the ERC to train employees with respect to fair housing and accessibility, and to implement best practices designed to help ensure accessibility at its multifamily properties.
“The Equal Rights Center is proud to welcome one of the most active and innovative real estate investment and development firms in the Washington, D.C. area to the Multifamily Housing Resource Program,” said ERC Executive Director, Don Kahl. “The MHRP continues to change the way the multifamily housing industry thinks about and prioritizes accessibility. Our partnerships with JBG and other industry leaders are resulting in more inclusive communities that improve the lives of thousands of individuals with disabilities.”
With this agreement, JBG has also agreed to review and enhance accessibility in 690 apartment units at two of its Bethesda, Maryland, apartment properties.
Founded in 1960, JBG is a leader in the metropolitan Washington D.C. area real estate market with a focus on urban, transit-oriented developments. JBG’s portfolio includes more than 21 million square feet of office, residential, hotel and retail space, including 4,500 multifamily apartment units.
“Since our founding, JBG has been committed to making a positive impact by establishing inclusive communities of quality housing,” said Brian Coulter, a managing partner with JBG. “We look forward to opening more doors to our communities as a result of our MHRP membership and collaboration with the ERC.”
The MHRP was founded as a proactive collaboration between the ERC and multifamily housing developers to increase the number of residential housing units in the United States that are accessible to persons with disabilities, and to enhance housing industry compliance with federal, state, and local accessibility laws. Through the MHRP, the ERC disseminates best practices, conducts employee trainings, and serves as a liaison between housing industry leaders and disability advocates.
JBG joins major multifamily developers AvalonBay Communities, Bozzuto Group, Camden Property Trust, Donatelli Development, Gables Residential, Kettler, Lerner Enterprises, Mill Creek Residential Trust, Paradigm Development Company, and Trammell Crow Residential, as Executive Members of the MHRP. Steven Winter Associates, Inc., a national architecture, engineering and building systems consulting firm with expertise in accessible design and construction, is an Advisory Member. Executive MHRP members represent nearly 600,000 housing units across the country.
The ERC was represented by the Washington Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights & Urban Affairs in reaching this agreement.
About the Equal Rights Center (www.equalrightscenter.org)
Originally formed in 1983, the Equal Rights Center (ERC) is a national non-profit civil rights organization based in Washington, D.C. With members located in every state and the District of Columbia, the ERC works nationally to promote equal opportunity in housing, employment, disability rights, immigrant rights, and access to public accommodations and government services for all protected classes under federal, state, and local laws.
About The JBG Companies (www.JBG.com)
Headquartered in Chevy Chase, Maryland, The JBG Companies is a private real estate investment firm that develops, owns and manages office, residential, hotel and retail properties. The company has more than $10 billion in assets under management and development in the Washington Metropolitan Area. Since 1960, JBG has been active in the communities where it invests, striving to make a positive impact.
About the Washington Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs (www.washlaw.org/)
The Washington Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs was established in 1968 to provide pro bono legal services to address issues of discrimination and entrenched poverty. Since its founding, the Committee has handled more than 5,000 cases on behalf of individuals and advocacy organizations in the areas of fair housing, equal employment, public accommodations, public education, asylum and refugee rights, disability rights, and prisoners’ rights.