Airbnb enforces rules to fight discrimination by hosts - KCTV5

Airbnb enforces rules to fight discrimination by hosts

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Airbnb hosts open up their home to complete strangers. For many, meeting new people from different backgrounds is part of the appeal. (KCTV5) Airbnb hosts open up their home to complete strangers. For many, meeting new people from different backgrounds is part of the appeal. (KCTV5)
KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -

A home rental app that's popular in the metro is changing its policies after reports of discrimination.

Airbnb hosts open up their home to complete strangers. For many, meeting new people from different backgrounds is part of the appeal.

Lance Pierce treats his spare bedroom like a hotel, down to the complimentary chocolates. And with every guest, he has a new story to tell.

"It brings together people you wouldn't ordinarily meet before," he said.

The house-sharing service recently launched a new set of anti-discrimination policies after an internal study found that some users were canceling reservations based on race, sexual orientation or gender identity.

Users now have to agree to this statement:

"By joining this community you commit to treat all fellow members of this community, regardless of race, religion, national origin, disability, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation or age, with respect, and without judgment or bias."

"I think it's great. That's the beauty of Airbnb. It brings together people who maybe wouldn't sit down to breakfast or have coffee with each other and just connect on a human level," Pierce said.

As a gay man, Pierce says he has not experienced discrimination through the site, and he hopes the new policies help all users overcome their biases and bring an inclusive environment into their home.

"Some people have come and found out I'm gay and then been uneasy. But once we have coffee, once we talk , that fear dissipates and there's nothing to be scared of," Pierce said.

Airbnb's new anti-discrimination policies go into effect Tuesday.

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