March 3, 2024

Lyft‘s pledge to protect women and nonbinary riders will be tested nationwide today (Feb. 13), as the app announces its Women+ Connect safety feature is expanding to users across the country.

Women+ Connect is an opt-in setting for women and nonbinary riders that asks the app to prioritize matches with women and nonbinary drivers. It was designed in collaboration with the Human Rights Campaign, the sexual assault prevention campaign It’s On Us, the National Association of Women Law Enforcement Executives (NAWLEE), and the National Sheriffs’ Association Traffic Safety Committee.

Lyft first debuted the gender-specific safety preference in September, announcing a limited release in Chicago, Phoenix, San Diego, San Francisco, and San Jose. The Women+ Connect feature will now be available to even more Lyft users across the country, including in major cities like New York City, Los Angeles, Washington D.C., Miami, Las Vegas, and Dallas.

Since its initial release, more than 7 million eligible riders have turned on the feature, Lyft reports. More than half of eligible women and nonbinary drivers are opted in to Women+ Connect, as well, and the company reports that these drivers keep the feature on for 99 percent of their driving time. Lyft says it has the highest satisfaction rate among drivers of any feature they’ve launched to date.

Lyft’s introduction of Women+ Connect, and other safety tools like Smart Trip check-in and location sharing, are in response to cries for additional security from both drivers and riders.

“Lyft is rolling out an inclusive product at a time when so many companies are shying away from explicit inclusion of transgender and nonbinary people,” wrote Jay Brown, chief of staff for the Human Rights Campaign, at the time of the Women+ Connect’s release. “Women+ Connect was built with intentionality to make rideshare better for women and nonbinary riders. When rideshare is better for these folks, it’s better for everyone, and we at HRC stand behind that.”

To opt-in to Women+ Connect, visit the app’s safety tools housed under account settings. Riders may also be prompted with a pop-up window upon opening the app — simply select “count me in” to use Women+ Connect.

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