Lyft News

Lyft and the Department of Homeland Security Partner to Combat Human Trafficking

Feb 7, 2024

Human trafficking — the coercion and exploitation of innocent people for labor or commercial sex acts — is a violation of human rights and an offense to human decency. Human trafficking can be facilitated in many ways, and we want to do our part to combat this often-hidden crime.

We are proud to announce a formal partnership with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to combat human trafficking. DHS launched the Blue Campaign as a national public awareness campaign to educate the public, law enforcement, and industry partners to recognize the indicators of human trafficking and appropriately respond to possible cases. We’re working directly with Blue Campaign and we’re honored to be their first rideshare partner.

Human trafficking prevention tutorials

As a DHS Blue Campaign partner, Lyft is developing educational tutorials for drivers, which will teach drivers how to identify signs of human trafficking and how to report a possible crime if they suspect a rider is a victim or perpetrator of human trafficking. The tutorial will be available in Lyft’s in-app Learning Center when it is released.

Lyft currently offers videos on human trafficking awareness and prevention for drivers across the country. Our new tutorial will leverage experts from DHS to supplement the existing tutorial. 

Our hope is that the driver community, which gives hundreds of millions of rides a year, can become an even greater force for good by helping identify these crimes. We will kick-start this partnership by educating drivers in the Las Vegas area on how to spot and report human trafficking ahead of Super Bowl LVIII, drawing upon resources from DHS’s Blue Campaign. 

"Human trafficking — the illegal exploitation of a person — is a heinous crime. We have zero tolerance for it," said Lyft CEO David Risher. "We're proud to partner with DHS's Blue Campaign to raise awareness on the issue, so the one million people who drive on the Lyft platform can recognize and report it when they see it."

“A crime as globally pervasive as human trafficking requires a whole-of-society effort to shine a light on these heinous acts; identify, protect, and support victims; and bring perpetrators to justice,” said Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro N. Mayorkas. “Key private sector partnerships and targeted trainings are critical to the success of our counter-human trafficking mission. The Department of Homeland Security’s new partnership with Lyft – which will teach drivers who interact with millions of riders every year to identify and help disrupt human trafficking – will help save lives and avert tragedies.” 

Lyft’s Commitment to Safety

Lyft and DHS will collaborate on additional opportunities to combat human trafficking throughout the course of the year. Beyond this partnership, today’s announcement is just one of many ways that Lyft is dedicated to building safe communities. 

We encourage users to report safety incidents to the Lyft support team and to law enforcement. Any user can report a safety incident through the Help tab in their Lyft app or can find more information on how to report an incident via Lyft’s website

As our partnership with DHS shows, we can’t do this work alone. In addition to working with the Blue Campaign, Lyft continues to consult with our Safety Advisory Council, who advise us on products, features, and processes that help keep our community safe. From this council, we benefit from the expertise of representatives from the Human Rights Campaign, It’s On Us, the National Association of Women Law Enforcement Executives, and End Violence Against Women International. 

More about the DHS Blue Campaign

The Department of Homeland Security Blue Campaign is a national public awareness campaign designed to educate the public, law enforcement, and industry partners to recognize the indicators of human trafficking, and how to appropriately respond to possible cases. Blue Campaign develops general awareness trainings, as well as specific educational resources to help reduce victimization within vulnerable populations. 

The DHS Blue Campaign has similar partnerships within the hospitality industry, as well as the airline industry through the Blue Campaign’s Blue Lightning Initiative (BLI), which trains aviation personnel to identify potential traffickers and human trafficking victims, and to report their suspicions to federal law enforcement. More than 350,000 personnel in the aviation industry have been trained through the BLI, and actionable tips continue to be reported to law enforcement.

In 2021, the U.S. National Human Trafficking Hotline received 10,359 reports of human trafficking, including 16,554 individual victims.