March 24, 2020 / 1:49 PM / 15 days ago

France's Accor, Airbnb help provide rooms for medics during crisis

FILE PHOTO: The logo of French hotel operator AccorHotels is seen on a flag pole at the financial and business district of La Defense in Puteaux, near Paris, France, May 16, 2018. REUTERS/Charles Platiau/File Photo

PARIS (Reuters) - French hotel group Accor (ACCP.PA) and home rental company Airbnb are launching online services to help medical staff fighting the coronavirus epidemic in France find emergency housing.

Europe’s largest hotel group said on Tuesday it had created CEDA, a platform to centralize housing needs and offer housing and was also working with the government to offer up to 2,000 beds in 40 hotels across France for the homeless.

“Access to the CEDA platform will be free for medical staff. Only operating costs will be covered by public authorities,” Line Crieloue, executive director of external communication at Accor told Reuters.

Separately, Airbnb is launching the “Appartsolidaire” online platform to offer free accommodation to medical staff and social workers in France, following a similar initiative in Italy, currently the epicenter of the Covid-19 crisis.

“Each host housing for free a medical or social worker during this operation will receive 50 euros from Airbnb on each booking,” Airbnb said in a statement.

Reporting by Claude Chendjou, writing by Dominique Vidalon; editing by Jason Neely

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