Under Pressure, Uber Ends Forced Arbitration For Sexual Misconduct Allegations

Uber Ends Forced Arbitration In Individual Cases Of Sexual Assault, Harassment
Uber Eliminates Forced Arbitration for Sex Misconduct Claims
Author

16 May, 2018

Uber, like many companies, has a clause in its user agreement - and its employment contract - that requires a person to waive his or her constitutional right to take Uber to court.

They can "tell their story wherever and however they see fit", West said. Gilman also points out that that Uber chief legal officer Tony West has credentials from the Justice Department to add weight to the policy.

In fact, Uber's new policy might not help her clients: The changes apply only to individuals.

A spokeswoman for Raliance stated that giving victims of sexual assault more options sends an important message that Uber is taking the issue more seriously.

"They're saying this case and these claims belong in private arbitration because on the app and embedded deep in the terms of services is a requirement for people to agree to private arbitration", she said.

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The news came one day ahead of a court-mandated due date for Uber to react in a proposed class action suit submitted by law practice Wigdor LLP on behalf of 9 females implicating motorists of sexual assault. Uber has made a critical step in this direction, but preventing victims from proceeding together, on a class basis, shows that Uber is not fully committed to meaningful change.

Uber also plans to publish a safety transparency report, including data on sexual assaults and other incidents that happen on the stand. Uber has yet to bring out the details of exactly what this report will entail including what time period it will cover, but it is supposed to include the number of sexual assault complaints the company has established.

The decision comes only two weeks after CNN concluded its investigation and reported its results, which discovered that at least 103 Uber drivers in the USA have been accused of sexually assaulting or abusing their passengers in the past four years. She said this is the "beginning of a longer process needed to meaningfully improve safety".

The decision by the San Francisco ride-hailing pioneer to drop its insistence on mandatory arbitration for such claims was followed by Lyft, Reuters reported. (I deleted the app previous year, after a driver found my phone number-through his trip history, I assumed-and repeatedly texted and called me.) Last month, Uber implemented a host of long-delayed safety features, such as an emergency-call button that connects a rider to a 911 operator and features real-time location data from the moving vehicle. Khosrowshahi has vowed to "do the right thing", fix the damage from previous missteps and lure back alienated riders who defected to rivals such as Lyft. While it's easy to pick on individual companies like Uber for having policies like this, the truth is that they're just doing what all companies do.


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