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Is Air BnB safe for women?

(42 Posts)
DJLippy Sun 24-Jun-18 14:28:54

It looks like Air BnB inclusion policy is not safe for women. It lists 'gender identity' as a protected characteristic but not sex.

If a guest asks for single sex accommodation then by the looks of this the host can self-ID as female - making their policy null and void.

www.airbnb.co.uk/help/article/1405/airbnb-s-nondiscrimination-policy--our-commitment-to-inclusion-and-respect

There have been past instances where female guests have been sexually assaulted - even murdered by their hosts. Considering the intimate nature of such a service Air BnB really don't seem to understand or care about women's safety.

fortune.com/2017/10/30/airbnb-murder-melbourne/

www.nytimes.com/2017/08/02/travel/airbnb-lawsuit-host-sexual-assault.html

www.airbnbhell.com/i-was-gang-raped-in-budapest-and-airbnb-ignored-me-then-insulted-me/

Dinosaurchicken Sun 24-Jun-18 14:30:04

I take your point. But not much is safe for women is it ? sad

DJLippy Sun 24-Jun-18 14:32:27

I don't think their inclusion policy is legal.

Offred Sun 24-Jun-18 14:38:47

TBF the gig economy as a whole involves erosion of protections for workers and service users. That’s the business model. That’s the reason it is profitable.

I wouldn’t stay in an air BnB as a woman on my own and think I was protected by what some random person offering a room had said to me on the Internet!

Which is not to say I think women shouldn’t use them or that the providers of rooms/homes should be allowed to be dishonest/abusive, it’s just the reality. These things are profitable because they cut safeguards and regulation. That makes them less safe.

placemats Sun 24-Jun-18 14:41:12

I'm convinced it's not solely confined to AirBnB though.

I find that as a single parent and a single woman who likes to travel alone and with my family, if a MAN isn't in the picture - despite a teenage son and a son in law, I'm property to be taken care of.

Offred Sun 24-Jun-18 14:42:07

There is a problem if generally people assume these things are safe and regulated to the same standards as other similar services. You can see why they would when it is a new thing and also has a co-ordinating company name.

The issue with air bnb is governments haven’t had time to respond to it. At least in the U.K. existing law allowed scrutiny to be given re the safety of uber.

QuinnElle Sun 24-Jun-18 14:42:08

The article you have quoted about an air b and b murder, the victim was a man.

DJLippy Sun 24-Jun-18 14:44:44

They still have to comply with UK law though - don't they? Sex is a protected charecteristic - not sex/

WTAF is 'gender identity'? It's a joke. Any man who say's he's a woman is a woman? Protected characteristics (except for religion) exist because it's things people cannot choose - like race, sexuality, SEX. Therefore it's wrong to discriminate precisely because this is a thing you have no control over. Allowing anybody to self-ID into the category 'woman' makes the legal protections women have been granted meaningless.

DJLippy Sun 24-Jun-18 14:46:05

^sex is a protected characteristic not gender identity

SymphonyofShadows Sun 24-Jun-18 14:49:24

After reading that thread about tiny cameras in all sorts of things I'm cautious about staying anywhere TBH

AngryAttackKittens Sun 24-Jun-18 15:06:28

It isn't. Neither are the other gig economy companies though. I know someone who used to work at Uber and let's just say that the stories that hit the news are the tip of the iceberg. One of the many things that those companies save money on is regulatory requirements related to the safety of the people who use their services.

Ereshkigal Sun 24-Jun-18 15:15:32

TBF the gig economy as a whole involves erosion of protections for workers and service users. That’s the business model. That’s the reason it is profitable.

I agree and I have had concerns about it from the start.

MyRelationshipIsWeird Sun 24-Jun-18 15:21:29

I can’t understand why anyone would use AirBNB male or female! I know the majority of people are nice and all that, but really what’s the point of cutting these corners?

Uber instead of a licensed cab? It cost more for the journey from city centre to my house! AirBnB instead of a cheap B&B or hotel? Why?!

In the olden days we were warned about getting into strangers’ cars or going back to their house: now we pay them for the privilege.

Just pay a proper amount for a proper service instead of getting into an unsafe situation with god knows who.

miri1985 Sun 24-Jun-18 15:52:06

I lived next door to an illegal airbnb so its definitely coloured my opinion on the company. The more you read about it, the more you realise how feckless they are when it comes to their own guests, hosts, neighbours etc.

Hosts are required to give ID when they register, however they are not required to prove that they own or have permission to rent out the property.

In our case, the person who appeared on the airbnb listing was a woman, we knew the house was rented by a man. In the reviews for the 10 properties this "woman" was renting out, no one ever said that they met her, they would always name someone else that they met. I've read that properties rented by women are more likely to get bookings.

The property was registered using a different womans name on booking.com

Southfields Sun 24-Jun-18 15:56:20

MyRelationshipIsWeird

Most of the AirBnB in my town cost more than a guesthouse

DJLippy Sun 24-Jun-18 16:04:12

I guess my issue is with their 'inclusion policy.'

They do not list sex as a protected characteristic - only gender identity.

Airbnb does not assign a gender identity to our users. We consider the gender of an individual to be what they identify and/or designate on their user profile.

Elsewhere they make it very clear they take a dim view of guests who behave in a non-inclusive manner

Inclusion – We welcome guests of all backgrounds with authentic hospitality and open minds. Joining Airbnb, as a host or guest, means becoming part of a community of inclusion. Bias, prejudice, racism, and hatred have no place on our platform or in our community.

Basically they are breaking the law because 'gender identity' is NOT a protected characteristic - SEX is.

When you consider the lack of decent regulation I think a policy like this is very very irresponsible.

TheChampagneGalop Sun 24-Jun-18 16:09:40

As I wrote on the deleted thread, the policy makes Air bnb unsafe for women. Now there has already been an incident were a woman thought she'd stay in a woman's house but it turned to be someone biologically male and no lock on the door.

YourVagesty Sun 24-Jun-18 16:16:17

I hired an apartment in London and the host wouldn't leave (it was a whole apartment rental). He finally took the hint and left but returned at 8pm with a bottle of wine. He let himself in and just would. Not. Leave.

My boss arrived at around 9pm and only at that point did the host give up and go. He kept sending me flirty texts for ages afterwards too. Hotels from now on!

pachyderm Sun 24-Jun-18 16:23:02

I used airbnb a couple of times at the start but once I became aware of how dodgy it is, and the negative effects it's having on neighbourhoods and rental markets, I stopped. A friend of mine uses private rooms in airbnb when she travels, to save a few quid (she is frugal rather than skint) and I've told her she's completely mad. Sleeping in unlocked rooms in strangers' houses in unfamiliar places, just nuts. confused

ShinyShooney Sun 24-Jun-18 16:31:40

DJLippy

The last link you posted is about a man getting gang raped in the street. Nothing really to do with airbnb other than the fact he locked himself out and says that's the reason he was out on the streets.

LassWiADelicateAir Sun 24-Jun-18 17:16:16

I can’t understand why anyone would use AirBNB male or female! I know the majority of people are nice and all that, but really what’s the point of cutting these corners?

Me neither. Same with Uber.

LassWiADelicateAir Sun 24-Jun-18 17:19:13

I hired an apartment in London and the host wouldn't leave (it was a whole apartment rental)

I wouldn't do this either unless it was a purpose built apartment hotel. It isn't the security aspect as much as having to be involved direct with an owner.

LapsedHumanist Sun 24-Jun-18 17:29:03

No. AirBNB’d once as no other accommodation available in small village.

1. Self-contained flat as actually an annexe with connecting door to owner’s house. Lockable from our side but also unlockable from other side and no chain/bolt
2. Tiny bathroom created out of a cupboard with electric shower over loo and sink with drain in middle of floor. Not the bathroom pictured.
3. Female owner was hostile, intimidating and frankly, racist. But careful to use language that only insinuated her vile prejudice (references to what we would cook and keen interest in whether I worked or not).
4. Decor featured culturally appropriated colonial relics and military paraphernalia (again, photos didn’t feature this).

The hosts were just cheap and out modes rather than actively malevolent. Shudder to think what someone with s real agenda could achieve.

Sparctopus Sun 24-Jun-18 17:38:07

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

NonSuchFun Sun 24-Jun-18 17:44:03

Sparctopus that thread has been deleted due to identifying posts, now you have done it again!

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