Uber pays $4.4 million for sexual harassment...

Uber Provides $4.4 Million to End Federal Sexual Harassment Investigation

Dara-Khosrowshahi

     Victims of sexual harassment and retaliation on Uber's service will be dealt with. The California giant will also have to take steps to enforce its policy.

     The US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) announced on Wednesday 18 December that Uber had agreed to pay $4.4 million (€3.95 million) in compensation to its alleged victims of gender discrimination.

     According to a press release, Uber agreed to compensate "any person the EEOC finds to be a victim of sexual harassment and/or related retaliation".

     The agency did not specify in detail to which incidents the compensation relates, but recalled that proceedings had been initiated "after wide publicity in 2017 regarding the treatment of Uber employees".

     After an investigation by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) resulted in a report on the culture of sexual harassment and retaliation against victims in the workplace, Uber agreed to pay a fine of $4.4 million.

     The investigation found that there are reasonable grounds to believe that such conduct existed at Uber, including under the leadership of its former CEO Travis Kalanick. 

     Tony West, Uber's General Counsel, went on to say that he was satisfied with the results of the investigation and that Uber is working to ensure that there is real fairness between people within the company.

     The agreement ends an investigation launched in 2017 in which the commission found reasonable grounds to believe that the transport technology company "allowed a culture of sexual harassment and retaliation against those who complained of such harassment".

     Uber also agreed to put in place new measures to identify individuals who are the subject of repeated complaints of sexual harassment as well as managers who fail to respond promptly to complaints.

     "The technology industry, among others, has often ignored allegations of sexual harassment when an alleged harasser is considered more valuable to the company than the person accusing him," said William Tamayo, Director of the EEOC.

     Uber Workers' Compensation is ending the EEOC's investigation concluding that there are "plausible grounds" to believe that the company "has fostered a culture of sexual harassment and retaliation against those who complain of such harassment".

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     "We have worked hard to ensure that all employees can thrive at Uber by putting fairness and accountability at the heart of who we are and what we do," said Tony West, Director in a statement. Uber Legal. "I am extremely pleased that we have been able to work with the EEOC to continue to strengthen these efforts."

     A claims administrator will send notices to women who worked at Uber between January 1, 2014 and June 30, 2019. The commission will determine which claimants may be eligible for money from the $4.4 million fund.

     In detail, the fine will be paid to those who have been victims of sexual harassment or retaliation since January 1, 2014. The distribution of the financial compensation will be the responsibility of the EOOC. In addition, Uber has decided to identify its employees who have been the subject of complaints from victims.

     This effort also concerns managers who have not taken initiatives against sexual harassment cases. As a result of the agreement between Uber and the EOOC, the company will also have to submit to the supervision of the agency's former commissioner, Fred Alvarez, for a period of three years. 

     EEOC Commissioner Victoria Lipnic said the agreement with Uber is designed to hold the company accountable for sexual harassment and retaliation against victims. Another objective is to put in place effective measures against this phenomenon. 

     The agreement between the parties also provides for the appointment of a claims administrator to collect grievances from former Uber employees who may have been victims of sexual harassment.

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