Airbnb Hires Former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder to Tackle Discrimination

Seth Fiegerman, CNN Money, July 20, 2016

Airbnb is bringing on a big name to show its commitment to tackling discrimination.

The company announced Wednesday that it has hired former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder to develop a “world-class anti-discrimination policy.”

The high-profile appointment follows numerous reports–and at least one lawsuit–about hosts on the platform refusing rooms to guests based on their race or gender.

In a strongly worded blog post announcing the hire, Airbnb’s CEO and cofounder Brian Chesky described tackling discrimination as “the greatest challenge we face as a company.”

“It cuts to the core of who we are and the values that we stand for,” he wrote. “We will not simply ‘address the issue’ by doing the least required for liability and PR purposes.”

In addition to hiring Holder, Airbnb is bringing on a former official from the ACLU to help conduct a review of the company’s shortcomings in weeding out discriminatory behavior. The $25 billion startup is also staffing up with employees whose sole job is to “detect and address” discrimination on the platform.

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