Uber has succeeded in maneuvering around having to pay a huge fine, after it negotiated a large cut to a regulatory fine of a whopping $59 million. News that Uber has negotiated the fine that it was handed on account of refusing to furnish data about alleged sexual assaults on its platform.
The fine was levied by the California Public Utilities Commission back in December, after the ride-hailing platform had refused to provide it with data pertaining to more than 3,000 cases of sexual assaults that users had filed against its service back in 2018. Even though the cases had been briefly outlined in the safety report released by the firm in 2019, the CPUC had demanded names and contact information of the aggrieved customers, which Uber had failed to provide.
A New Twist
However, a filing by the Commission on Thursday revealed that the two parties (the CPUC and Uber) have reached a preliminary agreement, under which, the firm is required to pay a sum of only $150,000. Additionally, the Commission’s demands of the names and contact data of the victims have been put to rest. However, at the same time, anonymized data about the sexual assault reports on the platform, will be required to be submitted.
Additionally, the firm has also agreed to donate $4 million and $5 million, respectively, towards the California Victim Compensation Board, and towards putting a stop sexual assaults in the industry, as reported by the San Francisco Chronicle.
In its filing, the CPUC has also, in its filing, said that similar data demands will be made on other ride-hailing services too.
In a statement to Bloomberg, Tony West, Chief Legal Officer at Uber, has said that the company looks forward to “continued collaboration” with the commission, so as to bring the “societal issue” to light, and improve safety and transparency to users.
Refuse to Comply
Back in 2018, there had been quite a row between Uber and the CPUC, after the firm repeatedly refused to comply with the Commission’s request to provide more details about the 2019 sexual assault report on its platform. The fine was levied in December 2020, and originally, was supposed to be paid within 30 days, along with provision of the adequate data to the authority. Otherwise, the company faced the risk of losing its license in the state. Nevertheless, back then, Uber had said that it “refused, without any legitimate legal or factual grounds, to comply.”
Source: Business Insider