Earlier this year in February, an Airbnb host cancelled on a client last minute because of her ethnicity. The former Airbnb host will be facing a fine of $5,000 and must take a university-level course on Asian American studies.
Tami Barker, the Airbnb host from California, must issue an apology to the guest, volunteer in a civil rights organization, and “appear in a public education event.”
The incident happened at Big Bear Lake, where she rented her cabin through Airbnb. Dyne Suh, a law student who rented the cabin, faced discrimination from the host and last minute cancellation. A month prior, Suh asked the host if she could bring a couple of extra friends, where the host agreed that it would be okay.
However, when the day came and Suh was five minutes away from the cabin, the host cancelled on them saying, “I wouldn’t rent it to u if u were the last person on earth,” and continued with the race card, “One word says it all. Asian.”
The host proceeded to pull the Trump card and texted Suh, “It’s why we have Trump” and “I will not allow this country to be told what to do by foreigners.”
The host made these comments without knowing that Suh is a US citizen, has been in this country since the age of three, and is a law student. The viral video of the incident shows Suh crying about the incident and in complete disbelief on what the host had messaged.
Since then, the Airbnb banned Barker and called her actions as “abhorrent and unacceptable.” The company took actions against this woman’s racial remarks with the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH). Barker is not the only host that has been penalized for discrimination.
The DFEH Chief Counsel Jon Ichinaga stated in the ruling:
“There is a monetary cost to discriminating in California: a $4,000 minimum penalty for discrimination in places of public accommodation, which the Department will seek in all appropriate cases.”
Suh has made a statement on her Facebook:
Press statement regarding the outcome of the Running Springs/Big Bear airbnb incident:I am very glad that the outcome…
There has been racial discrimination from Airbnb hosts, where ethnic minorities have reported being turned down for no apparent reason. Recently, a South African guest was aggressively pushed down by the stairs, sustaining multiple injuries, because she checked-out late.
(Source: BBC News)
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