Conference of Presidents Welcomes Airbnb Rescinding Earlier Decision Regarding Listings in Areas of the West Bank

Reconfirms oppositions to BDS and boycotts of Israel
New York, NY

Arthur Stark, Chairman and Malcolm Hoenlein, Executive Vice Chairman/CEO of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations issued the following statement:

We welcome the letter sent to our office by Airbnb notifying us that they have rescinded their earlier decision, settled all lawsuits, and will list all properties in the West Bank, Jewish and Arab alike, with profits going to organizations doing humanitarian work. This a critical decision given the high visibility of Airbnb and the attention given to its earlier announcement. The concern was that it was not only discriminatory but that it would set a precedent for other companies and be portrayed as an endorsement of the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement. Their clear repudiation of the BDS efforts was highlighted in their statement, which specified, “Airbnb has always opposed the BDS movement. Airbnb has never boycotted Israel, Israeli businesses, or the more than 20,000 Israeli hosts who are active on the Airbnb platform.”

We have had ongoing meetings and communication with leaders of Airbnb as well as with public officials who have notified them of the negative implications of their announced policy for the company. Several governors and other officials indicated that they could no longer do business with them if the policy was pursued.

We also appreciate the intervention by legislators at the federal and state levels and the numerous protests filed by prominent personalities and governmental leaders. We believe the steps Airbnb has taken both in resolving the legal challenges and clearly stating its rejections of the announced policy removes the impediment to doing business with the company and underscores the counterproductive nature of discriminatory measures and boycotts.

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The Conference of Presidents is the central coordinating body representing 50 national Jewish organizations on issues of national and international concern

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