As part of our ongoing work to build a community where everyone feels welcome, we are launching the Guide to Inclusive Hosting, a new resource for our Hosts.
This learning hub features educational articles and videos designed to help Hosts welcome guests from all backgrounds—especially those from historically marginalized communities. The Guide includes resources for understanding and addressing discrimination and unconscious bias, learning about hosting guests with accessibility needs, and guidance from other Hosts about actively practicing inclusion while hosting.
Hosts play a key role in Airbnb’s work to promote inclusion and combat bias, and it’s important that we partner with them and share information and tools to do so. While we have provided anti-bias and inclusion resources for Hosts since 2016, this new Guide makes it easy for Hosts to access a collection of new and existing actionable content in one place. We’ll continue to add resources going forward.
Host education is just one part of the work we’re undertaking to build an inclusive Airbnb community for all. We’ve also undertaken numerous product and policy initiatives, including:
Upholding The Airbnb Community Commitment. Everyone who uses Airbnb—guests and Hosts alike— must agree to our Community Commitment, an agreement to treat everyone with respect and without judgment or bias. During the sign-up process, all new Airbnb users are asked to agree to this Commitment before being allowed to use the platform. Those who decline the Commitment are prohibited from using the platform, and their accounts are automatically deactivated. Since 2016 more than 2.5 million people have been denied access to, or have been removed from, the platform for not agreeing to our Community Commitment, including 544,000 people in 2021.
Enforcing our Nondiscrimination policy: We enforce a strict nondiscrimination policy. A specialized team within our Community Support operations manage and addresses claims of discrimination.
If any guest believes they have been discriminated against and notifies our team, we review the report, and take appropriate action. In 2021, we suspended more than 5,100 accounts globally for violating our Nondiscrimination policy.
Rebooking Assistance: Under our Open Doors policy, introduced in 2016, if guests with current or upcoming reservations report experiencing discrimination, we will immediately help them book an alternative listing. We recently launched a 24-hour Safety Line as part of our new AirCover for Guests program, which is designed to make it easier for guests on a trip to get urgent help, including accessing this rebooking assistance. The 24-hour Safety Line is built directly into our app and website. If a guest experiences discrimination on a trip, they can use the 24-Hour Safety Line to connect with specially trained agents, who will offer to help them find an alternative space right away and will be able to rebook or refund guests as preferred. Guests can also continue to access rebooking assistance through our other Customer Support channels.
Identifying discrimination on our platform: We created Project Lighthouse to help us identify and understand the drivers of disparities across our platform, so that we can address these issues effectively and directly. Using Project Lighthouse, we are developing a data-informed action plan to address experience gaps on the platform and look forward to sharing more about this later this year.
Growing our investment in fighting discrimination: Since becoming one of the first tech companies to establish a permanent, dedicated anti-discrimination product team in 2016, we have continued to invest in and add resources to this work. Our original product team, now known as the the Anti-Discrimination and Equity Team, has expanded in size and scope. We’ve also established new teams dedicated to setting and driving equitable standards throughout the company, growing inclusion within our Host community and continuing to develop and deepen relationships with external organizations and partners. Additionally, we’ve introduced a cross-functional working group structure to drive this work across the company.
Supporting communities of color in becoming Hosts: To empower more people to benefit from home sharing, we’ve expanded the Airbnb Entrepreneurship Academy, a program to support people from historically marginalized communities in becoming Hosts on Airbnb. The Academy, which began in South Africa in 2017, has launched in communities across the United States, China, Colombia, India, South Africa, and Thailand.
While we are proud of the progress we’ve made to date, there is more work to do. We will continue to do so in collaboration with our community of Hosts and guests, and with partners and experts in the civil rights community.