Airbnb’s New Anti-Discrimination Policy

by TV One Staff

September 9, 2016

It’s SO EASY trying to catch a cab when you’re Black!

Like, we can barely stick our hand out before a yellow taxi graciously pulls up, ready to bring us safely to our next destination.

giphy (82)

Andddd scene!

Now ya’ll know catching a cab is a pain–and it’s simply due to discrimination. To many taxi drivers, Black people are seen as criminals who have a high possibility of not paying–or even worse, attacking. And to be honest, a few bad apples have spoiled it for all of us.

This is why apps like Uber and Lyft have been a savior. Other apps—like Airbnb— are helpful to those of us who don’t want to pay an arm and leg to have a place to stay when we travel— that is, IF we don’t go through the same kinds of discrimination when faced when trying to catch a cab.

On Airbnb, users submit a profile (with a picture) and make requests to stay at available places from other users on the site. Apparently Airbnb caught wind of discriminatory practices, after Harvard research revealed that folks were getting declined for being Black, as well as other factors such as, age, and gender.  This encouraged the site to update their anti-discrimination policy and for their CEO, Brian Chesky to issue an apology to Airbnb users:

“Bias and discrimination have no place on Airbnb, and we have zero tolerance for them. Unfortunately, we have been slow to address these problems, and for this I am sorry.”

Brian Chesky, CEO of Airbnb

According to the New York Times, Airbnb is looking to implement the change by developing new tools to route discrimination concerns to a group of trained specialists who will handle the complaints. Also they are planning to make more automatic bookings available, where users can book a space without the approval of a host.


TELL US: What are your thoughts on discrimination in the world of service? What do you think is a good solution?