Airbnb pulls listings amid 'party house crackdown'

August 01, 2020 - 3:00 am
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(1010 WINS) -- Airbnb has pulled 35 New Jersey listings from its platform as part of a “party house crackdown,” less than a week after an Airbnb party at a Jackson Township mansion drew more than 700 guests.

The online rental platform implemented a “Party House Ban” at the end of last year, but a “small minority of hosts” have continued to flout both those rules and New Jersey’s COVID-19 guidelines, the company said in a release Friday. 

“Today, Airbnb announced action to crack down on party houses throughout the state of New Jersey,” the company said. “As part of this, 35 listings across New Jersey that have received complaints or otherwise violated our policies on parties and events have been either suspended or removed from the Airbnb platform.” 

Gov. Phil Murphy implored New Jerseyans to stop throwing indoor house parties several times this past week, as an increasing number of COVID-19 cases have been linked to indoor gatherings.

“I get it. We’ve all had our routines turned upside down for the past four months, and we want to blow off some steam with friends,” he said Wednesday. “But indoor house parties spread coronavirus more efficiently.” 

In its release, Airbnb’s senior vice president of global policy and communications, Chris Lehane, said the company and its employees “stand with Gov. Murphy, and we support his call to action to stop parties and promote behavior that respects the public’s health.” 

“We ban party houses and will not tolerate irresponsible behavior on our platform,” Lehane said. “We know that there is still more work to be done, we ask that neighbors contact us as soon as possible through our Neighborhood Support Hotline, to directly communicate any concerns, which will help us continue to effectively enforce our party house ban.”

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