On Wednesday, a complaint was presented to the San Francisco County Superior Court. In the complaint, it is claimed that female passengers “were kidnapped, sexually assaulted, sexually abused, raped, unjustly imprisoned, stalked, harassed, or otherwise harmed by Uber drivers.”
“Safety comes first, which is why Uber has developed new safety measures, implemented survivor-centric policies, and raised its degree of transparency on major incidents. Although we are unable to comment on ongoing litigation, we will continue to put safety first in all that we do “they added on.
The sexual assaults allegedly took place in “multiple states,” per the lawsuit, which has been submitted by lawyers at the law firm Slater Slater Schulman.
Furthermore, it reported that at least 150 other potential cases are “being investigated.”
According to the lawsuit, Uber knew that some of those drivers were raping and sexually assaulting female passengers as early as 2014. The lawsuit, however, claims that the corporation favored “growth over customer safety.”
According to to Adam Slater, founding partner of Slater Slater Schulman, “Uber’s whole business model is built on providing customers a safe ride home, however rider safety was never their concern – growth was, at the expense of their passengers’ safety.”
Uber presented its second US Safety Report this month, which showed 998 cases of sexual assault, including 141 rape reports in 2020.
In the report, the company said it had received a total of 3,824 reports of the five most severe categories of sexual assault between 2019 and 2020.
The firm’s first safety report, which details incidents from 2017 to 2018, found 5,981 reports of sexual assault.
Uber’s most serious categories of sexual assault range from “non-consensual kissing of a non-sexual body part” to “non-consensual sexual penetration,” or rape. The nature of these allegations is incredibly serious. 550 women is an astonishing number to have come forward.
What makes the lawsuit even more damaging for Uber is it could be seen to provide yet more evidence of a toxic culture at the company. On Monday a former Uber executive came forward with multiple accusations of malpractice. Among the evidence he leaked, that Uber had a ‘kill switch’ that could be turned on if law enforcement came knocking, that would prevent police from finding information.
And the lawsuit claims something similar, that the company intentionally concealed that Uber drivers had sexually assaulted women. In other words, Uber was outwardly saying its rides were safe, when in reality the company knew it had a problem.
The lawsuit also says that the company didn’t conduct proper background checks on its drivers. Uber also says that the company has changed in recent years and regrets its past behavior but with so much bad press, investors worry that people will begin to turn elsewhere for their next ride.