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Lawsuit claims ‘thousands’ of women have been raped, harassed by Uber drivers
Photo via Teerawit Chankowet/Shutterstock (Licensed)
The complaint argues that Uber foregoes background checks to save money.
Two women are suing Uber, saying they were raped by drivers after ordering the ride-share service.
The lawsuit, which was filed in San Francisco on Tuesday, claims “thousands” of women riders have experienced “rape, sexual assault, physical violence, and gender-motivated harassment” from drivers while riding with Uber. In particular, the complaint argues that the ride-share company foregoes a traditional driver-vetting process to save money, leading to an ongoing harassment and assault problem that puts women in harm’s way. The plaintiffs are seeking class-action status so other victims can join the suit as well.
“Uber has done everything possible to continue using low-cost, woefully inadequate background checks on drivers and has failed to monitor drivers for any violent or inappropriate conduct after they are hired,” the complaint states, according to USA Today.
Attorney Jeanne M. Christensen from Wigdor LLP, which filed the lawsuit, called upon Uber to publish an in-depth report about the sexual assault and harassment experienced by passengers.
“The company must come forward with information about how many reports it has received about rapes, sexual assaults, and gender-motivated harassment to allow consumers to assess whether Uber really does provide safe rides, especially to women,” Christensen said, ABC News reports. “It’s time for Uber to ‘Do the right thing. Period.'”
Uber reportedly knows about the lawsuit and stresses that the company is taking steps forward to deal with sexual harassment and assault. Hopefully, that includes reporting assaults when they happen, which previously enraged Members of Parliament.
“Uber received this complaint today and we are in the process of reviewing it,” one spokesperson regarding the lawsuit, ABC News reports. “These allegations are important to us and we take them very seriously.”
2017 has been a sobering year for Uber. Back in February, engineer Susan Fowler wrote a post detailing an ongoing misogynistic culture at the company, contributing to sexual harassment towards women. The company has since faced a lawsuit from three Latina engineers for gender and racial discrimination as well as ongoing concerns about privacy violations among drivers.
Ana Valens is an LGBTQ reporter and essayist for the Daily Dot. Her work has previously appeared in Bitch, the Establishment, Vice's Waypoint, Rolling Stone's Glixel, and the Toast. She lives in Brooklyn, New York.