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Uber Shifts How it Handles Sex Assault Cases

15 May 2018

Instead, Uber will allow victims of sexual violence, including riders, drivers and employees, to choose the venue in which they want to pursue redress of their sexual harassment or assault claims, whether that's arbitration, mediation or open court.

However, asked about the 14 women who wrote a letter to Uber's board asking for release from the arbitration provision in order to pursue a class action lawsuit, West suggested the new policy did not apply.

"We have learned it's important to give sexual assault and harassment survivors control of how they pursue their claims", he said. "Whatever they decide, they will be free to tell their story wherever and however they see fit".

Khosrowshahi, who introduced the mantra "we do the right thing, period" to his employees, has been leading the effort to change Uber's company culture after allegations of sexual harassment, discrimination and bullying.

Uber won't force survivors of sexual misconduct into arbitration anymore.

Uber said they will also disclose data on sexual assaults and other incidents to "foster accountability", but as of now, no time frame has been set to release that report.

After several high-profile scandals, Chief Executive Officer Dara Khosrowshahi, who took the top job in August previous year, has been unveiling several safety measures to restore Uber's brand and image.

The company will no longer require confidentiality as part of settlement agreements in lawsuits pertaining to sexual assault or harassment.

Uber is now facing a class action lawsuit in the United States for poor driver vetting that has led to a series of sexual harassment incidents, including rape.

And the ride-sharing company said it would start publishing a transparency report that will include "data on sexual assault and other incidents that occur on the Uber platform".

He also flags the problem of crimes of sexual violence being underreported.

On the changes to confidentiality provisions, he says: "Divulging the details of what happened in a sexual assault or harassment should be up to the survivor, not us".

However, in the end, Uber has decided it will go ahead and publish data.

Following CNN's investigation and the letter, Senator Richard Blumenthal, a Democrat from CT, challenged Uber's use of forced arbitration and in a letter to CEO Dara Khosrowshahi "respectfully requested" the company end the practice. "We want to bring these numbers out in the open".

Uber Shifts How it Handles Sex Assault Cases