On November 14, 2017, Wigdor LLP filed a proposed class action lawsuit against Uber Technologies Inc. alleging that countless female riders have reported rapes, sexual assaults and gender-motivated violence at the hands of their Uber drivers, but Uber has done nothing to make rides safer.
As set forth in the complaint, two women—named Jane Doe 1 and Jane Doe 2 to maintain anonymity—allege they were raped by their Uber drivers after being misled by the company that they would be transported safely.
The Plaintiffs allege that Uber does not administer stringent background checks on its drivers, nor does it monitor the criminal backgrounds of its drivers after they are hired, despite communicating to customers that Uber provides “the safest rides on the road.” As a result, countless women have experienced unlawful conduct at the hands of their Uber drivers, including rape, sexual assault, physical violence and gender-motivated harassment, according to the complaint.
The lawsuit requests that the Court order Uber to disclose the data about the number of reported incidents, what Uber has done in response to the reports, including information about how many internal investigations resulted in the removal of drivers from the Uber app.
Uber misleads the public by falsely claiming that it provides safe rides, adequately screens drivers, properly tracks the transport of passengers, and maintains adequate insurance coverage for rides, according to the complaint. All of these measures ensure that Uber is able to profit at the expense of the safety of its riders, especially women.
The lawsuit also highlights how the #MeToo social media campaign—launched in the wake of the Harvey Weinstein scandal and similar reports of powerful men using their influence to sexually harass and assault others—resulted in thousands of individuals sharing stories about sexual assault, including many women who experienced sexual harassment, sexual assault, or rape by their Uber drivers.
The Plaintiffs are seeking injunctive relief, including requiring Uber to implement policies and procedures that will better protect passenger safety.
Statement from Jeanne M. Christensen, Partner at Wigdor LLP:
“As alleged in the complaint filed today against Uber, the Company must come forward with information about how many reports it has received about rapes, sexual assaults and gender-motivated harassment to allow consumers to assess whether Uber really does provide safe rides, especially to women. Uber must make drastic changes to prevent another female rider from harm. As alleged, the recent #MeToo campaign has exposed the heinous acts that female riders have been forced to endure during Uber rides. It is time for Uber to “Do the right thing. Period.”
Good Morning America
“Lawsuit claims female Uber passengers endure sexual assault and harassment by drivers”
November 15, 2017
“Two women file a class action lawsuit against Uber after being ‘raped by drivers’ as they claim thousands of females have endured violence using the ride-sharing service”
November 15, 2017