Tuesday, April 16, 2024
Uber Canada's office in Toronto.
Media releaseRide Hailing news

Class action filed for Uber passengers sexually assaulted

CONSUMER LAW GROUP has instituted a Canada-wide class action lawsuit against Uber on behalf of passengers that were sexually assaulted, assaulted, battered, raped, kidnapped, forcibly confined, stalked, harassed, otherwise attacked or subjected to other sexual misconduct by an Uber driver with whom they had been paired through the Uber App.

The class action is based on allegations that as early as 2014, Uber became aware that Uber drivers were physically and/or sexually assaulting and raping female passengers. Yet, Uber has failed to implement meaningful safety measures that would help to prevent, or at least mitigate, these crimes from occurring, including:

• Using background checks that require applicant drivers to submit their fingerprints and running it against against all available public databases, such as RCMP records. Uber does not invest in continuous monitoring of its drivers and is not immediately alerted when one of its drivers is implicated in criminal acts;

• The decision not to interview drivers or train drivers to ensure Uber’s drivers understood their responsibilities and what was appropriate and inappropriate when interacting with passengers;

• Uber’s policy that if it learns from an Uber rider that she was sexually assaulted, Uber will not report this sexual assault to law enforcement;

• Uber does not require video monitoring of its drivers that cannot be turned off, nor does it provide emergency notification to law-enforcement authorities when a driver drastically veers off course from the passenger’s destination, abruptly cancels the ride, or ends the ride at the intended destination but GPS data indicates the passenger remains in the car for a significant period of time;

• It failed to provide an option in the Uber App that allowed female riders to select to be driven by female drivers;

• It failed to adopt adequate training of its drivers on issues of sexual assault, sexual relations, sexually inappropriate behavior, sensitivity, and customer relations.

In its First U.S. Safety Report, Uber received 5,981 reports of sexual assault in 2017 and 2018. Among those, there were 464 reports of rape and 19 deaths caused by physical assault.

In its Second U.S. Safety Report, Uber received 3,824 reports of the five most severe categories of sexual assault, which range from “non-consensual kissing of a non-sexual body part” to “non-consensual sexual penetration,” or rape in 2019 and 2020. Among those, there were 141 reports of rape and 20 deaths caused by physical assault.

Following Uber’s first report, the California Public Utilities Commission fined Uber $59 million for failing to turn over additional data on sexual assaults and harassment incidents on its platform. The California regulator later drastically reduced the fine as part of a settlement agreement approved in December 2021, with Uber agreeing to pay $9 million toward safety-related initiatives.

In addition, Uber actively markets itself as a safe company that provides safe rides. Both before 2014 and after, Uber actively and aggressively marketed the supposed safety of its transportation services. These efforts continue to this day.

If you or someone you know has been sexually or physically assaulted by an Uber driver and you wish to receive more information on potential compensation or to be kept advised of the status of the Uber Sexual Assault Canadian Class Action litigation or any resulting compensation from this lawsuit in Canada, Ontario, or Quebec, please provide your contact information to our law firm by using the form below.

IF YOU WISH TO JOIN THE CLASS ACTION OR TO SIMPLY GET MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE COMPLETE THE FORM BELOW. Please note that providing your information creates no financial obligation for you. You are not charged any fee or cost for joining this class action. Our law firm is paid a contingency fee from the compensation recovered, only if the class action is successful. All information contained in this transmission is confidential and Consumer Law Group agrees to protect this information against unauthorized use, publication or disclosure