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  • By: Sharks At Law
  • Published: May 16, 2018
A phone featuring with different social media logos including uber - Sharks at Law

Uber has announced its plans to change the legal process for sexual assault victims involving employees, drivers, and other riders. Before Tuesday, anybody that alleged sexual assault involving somebody related to Uber, were subject to a lengthy legal process.

CNN found in a recent study that at least 103 Uber drivers have been accused of sexually assaulting or harassing their passengers in the past four years. Some of them were arrested and some are still currently wanted by police. The majority are involved in civil suits involving the incident.

Previously, upon signing up for Uber, users agreed to resolve any claims they may have individually through arbitration. Critics to this policy claimed that including this mandatory arbitration clause helped the rideshare giant keep bad news quiet, although other rideshare hosts like Lyft and Via have similar clauses in their sign-up agreements. Uber also detailed confidentiality and non-disclosure agreements in their terms of use. These are also being changed.

Tony West, Uber’s Chief Legal Officer, detailed the company’s decision to lift the mandatory arbitration clause and non-disclosure agreements in a press release on Tuesday.

“Every day, Uber connects 15 million trips around the world. At that scale, our service ultimately reflects the world in which we operate—both the good and the bad. And it’s clear that sexual violence remains a huge problem globally,” said West.

West related Uber’s decision to change the policies to current world affairs involving the secrecy surrounding sexual assault in bigger industries, saying that now is the time for the company to lift this part of their policy.

“The last 18 months have exposed a silent epidemic of sexual assault and harassment that haunts every industry and every community. Uber is not immune to this deeply rooted problem, and we believe that it is up to us to be a big part of the solution,” said West.

He went on to defend the company’s use of this process before, explaining that the arbitration process is not settling and that it does not keep survivors from speaking out about their experiences if they wish to do so.

Uber hopes that its recent change in policy will put riders at ease and hopes to better help survivors.

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