The ride-hailing company Lyft will be donating $150,000 in ride credits to support immigration groups across the US in the next six months.
The company has also partnered with Raices, a not-for-profit organization providing legal services to immigrants. Through its Round Up & Donate program, Lyft will match rider donations to Raices throughout the month of July, and it will commit to up to $50,000 to the organization in support of their services.
With the tagline “America is an idea, not a geography”, the Lyft campaign shares the stories of drivers who work for the company and have come to the US from other countries.
In addition to the $150,000 donation, Lyft riders can round up their ride payments to the nearest dollar and donate the difference to Raices, the company’s not-for-profit partner. A Raices spokesperson told the Guardian the partnership had been “an invaluable resource” allowing them to use credits to transport immigrants and their advocates to court appearances and legal consultations.
“Raices compassionately defends and empowers immigrants and advocates for human rights, equality, respect, and the right to migrate,” the spokesperson said. “Most of the people we work with do not have access to reliable transportation.”
Lyft’s push to highlight the rights of immigrants, including its own workers, comes as Donald Trump has ratcheted up threats against undocumented immigrants living in the United States and his administration has has come under fire for poor conditions at border facilities, including those housing children.
Lyft has offered similar options since 2017, allowing passengers to donate to partner organizations including the American Civil Liberties Union, Black Girls Code and the Human Rights Campaign.
In January 2017, the company also promised to donate $1m to the ACLU over a period of four years. The donation came following the Trump administration’s decision to bar immigrants from several Muslim countries. Last July, Lyft partnered with 50 immigration organizations across the US to provide free rides for immigrants and refugees.
Gig Workers Rising, a group of contractors and other workers organizing for better conditions at app-based companies, said the company’s new partnership was a positive move for immigrants but that workers still needed better protections and health benefits.
Both Lyft and its competitor Uber have been aggressively campaigning against a law proposed in California that would force them to reclassify drivers as employees. Lyft reportedly sent out “misleading” emails to drivers convincing them to oppose the legislation that would give them more rights.
“Our drivers are the people who give rides to our brothers and sisters to show up for court appearances and legal consultations,” a spokesperson for Gig Workers Rising said. “We are proud to do that but this corporate partnership doesn’t give Lyft an easy pass.”
This article was amended on 1 July 2019. An earlier version reported that Lyft had previously partnered with Planned Parenthood through Round Up & Donate. It has not. The post has also been updated with the details of Lyft’s donations….Read more>>