Uber’s Safety Report Highlights Stark Numbers of Sexual Assault While Setting Example for Corporate Transparency
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: December 6, 2019
Lawrenceville, N.J. – Following Uber’s release of their 2017 – 2018 safety report, the New Jersey Coalition Against Sexual Assault’s Executive Director, Patricia Teffenhart, offered the following comment:
“Uber’s safety report discloses that the company received nearly 6,000 reports of sexual assault from 2017 to 2018, both experienced by passengers and by drivers. Companies choosing to transparently and openly share data about sexual violence is a critical first step as we work towards a world free from violence. We hope to see similar ride sharing apps, corporations, and businesses also follow suit.”
“Openly sharing information about incidents of sexual violence is a good first step to hold systems accountable – we have seen that in action with institutions of higher education, who report annual safety and security data publicly as well. We also know sexual violence is vastly underreported, and appreciate that Uber highlighted this in their report as well. We always know and recognize that the statistics being reported out about sexual violence are only the tip of the iceberg – the U.S. Department of Justice found that nearly 80 percent of rapes and sexual assaults go unreported.”
“Looking forward, we hope to learn more about the process Uber employs in its investigatory processes and about the outcomes of the nearly 6,000 reports they received in 2017-2018. Ending forced arbitration and confidentiality clauses are promising steps Uber has already implemented. We know that so many other systems let survivors down and are hopeful that just as Uber is serving as a model in its transparency, they can serve as a model for other companies looking to strengthen their response to survivors.”
“Ride sharing is especially important for New Jerseyans, as our state has both densely and sparsely populated locales that oftentimes lack accessible public transportation. Uber has taken initiative in releasing these numbers and highlighting the problem of sexual assault during trips. We look forward to seeing some of the new safety measures they described being put into practice and charting a course forward to create safer spaces for all users, both drivers and passengers.”
ABOUT NJCASA: NJCASA (www.njcasa.org) is the statewide technical assistance, and capacity building organization that represents New Jersey’s twenty-one county-based rape crisis centers, and the Rutgers University Office of Violence Prevention and Victim Assistance. NJCASA elevates the voice of sexual violence survivors and service providers by advocating for survivor-centered legislation, training allied professionals, and supporting statewide prevention strategies that work to address and defy the socio-cultural norms that permit and promote rape culture.