Airbnb unveils housing plan for 100k displaced people by 2022

Airbnb unveiled the plans over the weekend. Picture: Contributed
Airbnb unveiled the plans over the weekend. Picture: Contributed
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Travel firm Airbnb has announced plans to provide short-term housing to 100,000 displaced people by 2022.

The company, which helps people list and rent short-term stays in residential properties, was one of a number of organisations to take a stand against Donald Trump’s immigration ban earlier this year, along with the likes of Apple, Uber and Microsoft.

Airbnb chief executive Brian Chesky said last month that the firm would offer free housing to refugees and others refused entry to the United States as a result of the ban.

And a blog post published this weekend with the headline #weaccept and co-signed by Chesky and fellow co-founders Joe Gebbia and Nate Blecharczyk outlined Airbnb’s plans to take further action.

The post began: “We believe in the simple idea that no matter who you are, where you’re from, who you love, or who you worship, you deserve to belong.

“We know this is an idealistic notion that faces huge obstacles because of something that also seems simple, but isn’t - that not everyone is accepted.

“People who’ve been displaced, whether because of war or conflict or other factors, are acutely vulnerable to not being accepted.

“They are, quite literally, in need of a place to belong, which is why we’ve been inspired to take action.”

The firm has provided housing for evacuees of disasters during 54 global events, and has partnered with refugee organisations around the world.

The post continues: “Today we’re setting a goal to provide short-term housing over the next five years for 100,000 people in need. We’ll start with refugees, disaster survivors, and relief workers, though we want to accommodate many more types of displaced people over time.”

The company has also pledged to donate $4 million (about £3.2m) to the International Rescue Committee to support the ‘most critical needs of displaced populations globally’ over the next four years.

Airbnb is set to reach out to its network of hosts for accommodation, but also to help displaced people find a ‘place to feel connected, respected, and a part of community again’.

A TV advert based on the campaign aired during Sunday night’s Super Bowl event.