Monday 11 December 2017

Airbnb host fined $5,000 for making discriminating comments against Asian guest

Dyne Suh had posted an emotional video about the incident on YouTube after it happened.

(Airbnb/PA)
(Airbnb/PA)

By Zaina Alibhai

An Airbnb host who made a racist comment while cancelling a guest’s reservation has been made to pay a $5,000 (£3,800) fine and attend a university course on Asian-American studies.

Host Tami Barker told guest Dyne Suh she would not rent the $250 (£190) a night property to her if she were the last person on Earth.

In a series of messages, she said: “One word says it all. Asian.”

Suh had booked the home in February as part of a skiing trip with her fiance and friends in Big Bear, California. She later asked the host if two friends could stay at the property as well, to which Barker agreed.

Just had an airbnb cancel on me spewing racism

Posted by Dyne Suh on Friday, February 17, 2017

When she was close to the property, Suh had messaged Barker through the Airbnb app but the host cancelled the reservation.

She sent Barker a screenshot of text messages where she’d agreed to hosting additional guests, and said she would file a complaint to Airbnb.

Barker responded: “It’s why we have Trump… I will not allow this country to be told what to do by foreigners.”

The California Department of Fair Employment and Housing has said Barker will pay a $5,000 fine, issue a personal apology to Suh and perform community service at a civil rights organisation.

Press statement regarding the outcome of the Running Springs/Big Bear airbnb incident:I am very glad that the outcome…

Posted by Dyne Suh on Thursday, July 13, 2017

In a Facebook statement, Suh said she was pleased Barker had to attend an Asian-American studies course and hoped the settlement would encourage others to report discrimination.

She wrote: “If we want racism and discrimination to end, we cannot keep suffering in silence, and we cannot stand idly by when it is happening to other people of color and other oppressed minority groups. We are in this together.”

Press Association

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