In response to the widespread #MeToo movement, Uber announced on Tuesday the company will change its policies for employees, drivers and passengers who claim they experienced sexual harassment or assault.
The new rules mark another conciliatory move made by Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi (kahs-row-SHAH'-hee).
Uber riders who experience sexual harassment or assault will now be able to take their claims to court, instead of being forced into private arbitration, the ride-hailing app announced Tuesday. The women, represented by law firm Wigdor LLP, made a direct appeal to Uber's board in a letter last month, asking directors to waive the company's mandatory arbitration and anti-class action provisions.
Uber's sexist policies within their company, as well as their bad habit of hiring drivers that have a tendency to sexually assault their customers have always been public knowledge. "So moving forward, survivors will be free to choose to resolve their individual claims in the venue they prefer: in a mediation where they can choose confidentiality; in arbitration, where they can choose to maintain their privacy while pursuing their case; or in open court". The San Francisco company is also scrapping a policy requiring all civil settlements of sexual misconduct to be kept confidential, giving victims the choice of whether they want to make their allegations public. "Whether to find closure, seek treatment, or become advocates for change themselves, survivors will be in control of whether to share their stories".
Uber also promised to publish a safety transparency report that will put numbers behind sexual assaults and other incidents that occur on its platform.More news: Suspect in Massive CIA Leak Identified
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The modification comes 2 weeks after the reporter reported the outcomes of its examination, which discovered a minimum of 103 Uber motorists in the United States who have actually been implicated of sexually attacking or abusing their guests in the past 4 years. The changes are being announced amid concerns that Uber hasn't done enough to protect its riders.
Assault and harassment cases are now exempt from that requirement.
Christensen criticized Uber's rebooted policy for not applying to class-action cases.
For a company with Uber's history, I'll believe it when I see it. Uber faced a reckoning of its own previous year after former software engineer Susan Fowler wrote a poignant blog post documenting harassment she faced there. "This is the beginning of a longer process needed to meaningfully improve safety". The changes governing sexual misconduct come a month after Uber announced it will do criminal background checks on its US drivers annually and add a 911 button for summoning help in emergencies. Critics say the practice helps companies keep the issue of sexual violence quiet.