In light of President Trump’s executive order that places a travel ban on refugees from seven Muslim countries, competing ride-hailing services Lyft and Uber are embroiled in a battle of their own. A spokesman for Lyft said in a statement on Sunday that it opposes Trump’s order and plans to donate $1 million to the American Civil Liberties Union (“ACLU”), while Uber is being deleted from countless devices and scorned on social media after the company decided to continue providing rides to New York’s JFK Airport, where dozens of travelers from countries named in President Trump’s recent executive order were being detained.
Lyft issued a statement to users citing their disagreement with the “antithetical” order and emphasizing the company “will not be silent.” The New York-based rideshare company announced plans to donate $1 million to the ACLU over the next four years to help “defend our Constitution.”
The statement further reads: “This weekend, Trump closed the country’s borders to refugees, immigrants and even documented residents from around the world based on their country of origin. Banning people of a particular faith or creed, race or identity, sexuality or ethnicity, from entering the U.S. is antithetical to both Lyft’s and our nation’s core values. We stand firmly against these actions, and will not be silent on issues that threaten the values of our community. We ask that you continue to be there for each other — and together, continue proving the power of community.”
Lyft CEO Logan Green tweeted about the company’s stance, saying the ride-hailing service has strived to create an “inclusive” environment.
As Lyft issued this statement Sunday morning, social media users were busy attacking Lyft’s most direct competitor, Uber, for continuing to provide rides as taxi drivers refused to provide service to JFK on Saturday. Uber suspended surge pricing, and continued to provide transportation to and from JFK, leading many to accuse them of profiting off of the protest and of engaging in “collusion” with the Trump administration.
The hashtag #DeleteUber became a trending topic after a slew of users said they would not support the app after seeing the company “endors[ing] breaking a picket line striking in solidarity for basic human rights” and “tolerat[ing] a hateful and unlawful action.”
Uber’s NYC Twitter account tweeted Sunday that the suspension of surge pricing was not meant to “break” the strike going on at JFK. The company released a statement from CEO Travis Kalanick, who joined Trump’s business advisory group and has faced backlash for doing so.
Kalanick defended his decision to join the group, but began his statement by saying Uber will provide support and compensation to employees who are affected by the executive order with if they cannot get back into the U.S. as a result.
Kalanick said allowing refugees and immigrants “has largely been the U.S.’s policy since its founding” and he plans to bring up concerns about the ban during the first business advisory meeting with Trump this Friday.