Thursday 23 November 2017

Airbnb embroiled in new discrimination row

Last week, Airbnb released a memo stating it was launching an internal review to see what else it can do to battle discrimination. Photo: Getty
Last week, Airbnb released a memo stating it was launching an internal review to see what else it can do to battle discrimination. Photo: Getty

Chiara Palazzo

Airbnb is facing an outcry after a transgender guest stated she was denied a stay by a host because of her gender identity.

Shadi Petrosky, a well-known Hollywood producer, tweeted a screenshot on Sunday of a Minneapolis-based host denying her a stay because she did not want her 13-year-old son to "feel any discomfort in his own home", but thanked Ms Petrosky for her "honesty".

Ms Petrosky said she had privately complained to Airbnb in 2015, but the company upgraded the host to "super host" status, which rewards more experienced hosts with multiple five-star reviews from their guests.

It took a viral post, that has been retweeted over a thousand times, for the firm to take action.

The host was finally suspended this week.

"Discrimination has no place in the Airbnb community. We are removing this host from Airbnb," spokesman Nick Papas said.

Last week, Airbnb released a memo stating it was launching an internal review to see what else it can do to battle discrimination. The Hollywood producer clarified on Twitter that she decided to share the episode now because the company is being accused of failing to address complaints of racial discrimination.

In a posts following the viral tweet Ms Petrosky, now an "accidental transsexual travel activist," said the house-sharing company has no LGBTQ non-discrimination policy.

Black guests have been complaining they are denied accommodation because of their race.

Telegraph.co.uk

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