Uber Technologies Inc. on Tuesday became the second major company to eliminate mandatory arbitration to resolve allegations of sexual harassment or assault, offering victims various options to pursue their claims, including public demands.
The decision of the world’s largest passenger transport service comes after several high-profile scandals and is a step in the right direction, according to several legal experts, but it does not address collective demands.
The executive president, Dara Khosrowshahi, unveiled a series of security measures to restore the brand and image of Uber since he took office last August.
Previously, victims were required to enter into confidentiality agreements as part of the arbitration to resolve the claims, which prevented them from speaking publicly about the facts surrounding any sexual assault or harassment.
Now they can resolve claims through mediation, where they can choose confidentiality; in arbitration, where you can choose to maintain your privacy while pursuing your case; or in court, Uber said in a blog post.
“We are committed to publishing a safety transparency report that will include data on sexual assaults and other incidents that occur on the Uber platform,” Uber legal director Tony West wrote on the blog https://www.uber.com / newsroom. / turn on the lights on.
“So, by moving forward, the survivors will be able to freely choose to resolve their individual claims in the place they prefer.”
Jeanne Christensen, an attorney with Wigdor LLP who has been handling cases of sexual harassment against Uber, agreed with the measure.
“It’s a step towards making a change, but simply bringing the issue to light does not solve the problem,” Christensen told Reuters.
Uber did not provide details on the number of sexual harassment cases that are pending or have been resolved, but when contacted Reuters said it will not review previous cases that were resolved through the confidentiality agreement.
In December, Microsoft Corp finalized http://bit.ly/2IKXZq4 the clauses of forced arbitration, and said that victims of sexual harassment would no longer need to resolve cases privately.
“It’s a move in the right direction, but the problem is that the arbitration agreement prevents the class action, which is essential for a policy change,” said Veena Dubal, an associate professor of law at the University of California, Hastings.
Currently, Uber is facing a class action lawsuit in the United States for poor driver control that has led to a series of incidents of sexual harassment, including rape.