Lyft offering free rides to get people to job interviews, work

NOW: Lyft offering free rides to get people to job interviews, work

SOUTH BEND, Ind., --- Amid the nationwide labor shortage, the ride share app Lyft is hoping to get rid of barriers for people trying to get a job, by getting them to the job. Lyft is offering free rides to job interviews in South Bend, and free trips to the first few weeks of work.

The South Bend Regional Chamber of Commerce told ABC57 they hope this can be step to help eliminating barriers for folks and for businesses to get more people in the door specially to fill those entry level positions.

“You know there are many high demand but low wage jobs and how we do make sure people have access to that transportation and anything that will knock down barriers to getting to work,” said Kate Lee, the Executive Director of Education & Workforce with the Chamber.

Lyft’s nationwide job access program is offering free ride share services to help folks in the South Bend area get to job interviews, training, and even their first few weeks of work if they get hired.

A tool Lee believes employers could take advantage of to really help fill those open positions.

“…make sure employers are even informing their employees like hey if there is a challenge here, let’s look at these programs. Through the Lyft Program, Uber, Commuter Trust.”

In Indiana the most recent unemployment rate statewide was at 2.2% with a similar number in St. Joseph county.

Even with those low numbers Lee said employers are still struggling to get people in the door.

"Across every industry there are challenges filling jobs, you can see it when you go into a restaurant, anywhere you go. And then we hear it from our employers, our members of the chamber.”

She believes free programs to help eliminate any major barriers like transportation is just one step to help combating the labor shortage in Michiana.

“Any program that reduce barriers such as transportation, buying a uniform, childcare is another huge barrier for many people trying to go to work. Any programs we can put in place that reduce that barrier and allow people to get into a position that allows them financial stability.”

Lyft’s Job Access Program only serves select cities, including South Bend here in Michiana.

It is similar South Bend's Commuters Trust Program that also offers discounted rides through multiple organizations.

If you want more information about Lyft’s program or to get connected to other resources outside of South Bend, click here.

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