Have you heard of Lyft? I hadn't, but Julie Federico brought it to my attention. She is a driver and brought up a really good aspect to Lyft, that often we forget about wen we look at companies. The Domestic Violence aspect!
It is a ride sharing company, rather like Uber. It was started in 2012 by Logan Green and John Zimmer, they had started Zimride in 2007, which was a service which provided rides between cities, longer ride services other than shorter rides. Zimride connected both drivers and riders through Facebook Connect and eventually became the largest ride-share program in the US.
I like the fact that all drivers undergo screening processes with the Department of Motor Vehicle, national sex offender registries, and personnel-type criminal background checks. The criminal background check goes back seven years and includes national and county-level databases, as well as national sex offender registries. In-person interviews with current Lyft drivers. Drivers must be 21 years or older and have had a driver's license for more than 1 year. There is a zero-tolerance drug and alcohol policy.
in 2013, Lyft sold Zimride to Enterprise Holdings, the parent company of Enterprise Rant a car and Lyft went into partnership with GM and Prince al-Waleed bin Talal of Saudi Arabia made s substantial investment into the company.
So how and where does this all effect Domestic Violence victims? As Julie kindly explained it can be a 'back up' app on your phone. The first ride is free! She did say it is an unconventional resource but she's right! How many times do we hear about how women have finally plucked up the courage to leave an abusive relationship after finding somewhere to stay can't get there. How many times has transport become an issue for abused women, especially those who are financially abused too. Julie would like as many women and teens to have the code for a free ride available.
In Julie's words:
"I drive for Lyft. They can be very helpful for women needing to make a fast get away from violence. This is the information cut and paste it or change it anyway that you want. What my goal is, is to get this code into the hands of women/teen's everywhere who need help. At times you have maxed out your favor from a friend list and there is no one to call when you need a ride. Lyft is open 24 7 365. Good news. Here is the scoop on how to get a ride for free.
Unconventional domestic violence resource but very practical.
Lyft is offering one free ride to new users. Lyft is a taxi service that operates out of most major cities. Rides become available minutes after you call for a driver on their app. In a domestic violence situation this service can be a life saver. Sometimes as you know abusers will sabotage their victim's cars. Also on certain days people just need to make a fast get away. Users should know that all Lyft rides are directly billed to the credit card they use when they sign up for the app. The bill goes to the credit card right after the riders get out of the Lyft card.
Users download the Lyft app from google play.
Load their information and credit card information
Then they can call for rides.
Use coupon code: LYFTFORYOU2016 to receive the free ride.
This coupon does not expire but my only be used once per person."
What do you think? Do you believe it will help Domestic Violence victims and at risk teenagers? People who have a stalker, to get away?
Now, not only is Julie a driver for Lyft but she is a kick-ass children s book author too! She has written Anger is Okay, Violence is NOT, as well as other books for children's safety, The Bad Guys: Student/Teacher’s Guide to School Safety and Violence Prevention, Friends are Wonderful, Some Parts are NOT for Sharing. Julie is a former Middle school counselor and was employed with Jefferson County Public School District during the 1999 Columbine High School shootings and was a first responder. Julie has dedicated her latest books to the Sandy Hook community in Newton, CT. She is an expert in school violence has spent over a decade confronting this epidemic problem in our society. You can find more information on Julie and her work at: www. juliefederico.com