To better help residents in underserved communities get to their essential jobs, appointments, programs or stores, Lyft will offer 1.5 million rides, via the LyftUp Access Alliance program, the company announced today (August 11), so that members of the Black community can reach COVID-19 testing sites, have access to food delivery, mental health, jobs and more.

Anthony Foxx, chief policy officer at Lyft and former secretary of transportation under President Barack Obama, said of the program in an emailed statement: 

The current health crisis has disproportionately impacted communities of color; it’s also given us a clear look at the systemic barriers that stand in the way of social and economic empowerment for Black communities specifically. While Lyft’s social impact work has always aimed to provide access in underserved communities, the need for a focus on Black communities cannot be overstated. The LyftUp Access Alliance is critical in supporting these communities by solving problems, not simply overcoming them for the moment.

With former senior advisor to Obama and Lyft board member Valerie Jarrett joining LyftUp as chair of LyftUp Access Alliance, and My Brother’s Keeper Alliance and the National Urban League joining as founding partners, the program is also launching with collaboration from the NAACP, the National Action Network, Black Women’s Roundtable and the National Bail Fund Network

“The Lyft partnership is an added benefit that will provide invaluable access to transportation to the Black community across this country,” said Antoine Holman, NAACP’s vice president of corporate relations. “For so many in our society, the cost of transportation has become a burden; Lyft’s donation of rides enables countless individuals to remove transportation as an impediment.”

To learn more: visit LyftUp programs; how individuals and organizations can donate rides; and watch the video below, courtesy of Lyft: