Airbnb issued the following statement in response to the Trump Administration’s announcement that it will expand its travel ban to six additional countries. According to today’s announcement, the different immigration restrictions will be placed on Eritrea, Kyrgyzstan, Myanmar, Nigeria, Sudan and Tanzania.
“Airbnb’s purpose is to make it possible for anyone to belong anywhere. We believe belonging is fundamental to supporting community and that the freedom of travel foundational to advancing the human condition. Given Airbnb’s very purpose is to facilitate people to people belonging, as a company and a community, we objected to the original travel ban and continue to believe such policies are in opposition to our purpose. We believe that you should be able to travel to, and live in any community around the world, regardless of your race, religion or ethnicity – that the power to travel makes us all better. This belief is at the core of our purpose to create a world where anyone can belong anywhere.”
Since it was first announced in 2017, Airbnb has opposed the travel ban, joining more than 100 U.S. companies in filing an amicus brief in support of a court challenge to the policy (Trump v. Hawaii). Airbnb has also endorsed the National Origin-Based Antidiscrimination for Nonimmigrants (NO BAN) Act, introduced by Senator Chris Coons of Delaware and Congresswoman Judy Chu of California in April 2019.
Airbnb launched the Open Homes platform in 2012 in the wake of Hurricane Sandy, and it has grown as a part of its ongoing efforts to house vulnerable populations around the world. Initially, the platform was focused on housing those displaced by natural and manmade disasters but expanded to include refugees and patients traveling for critical medical care. Airbnb works with relief organizations and nonprofits to provide free, temporary housing to people impacted by disaster, conflict, or life-threatening illness. Anyone who wants to share their space with a refugee can volunteer to open their home by visiting airbnb.com/welcome/refugees. To date, the Open Homes community has housed more than 40,000 people in need.