July 19, 2024
Uber Faces Legal Action Amidst Surge in Sexual Assault Cases

There is a concerning rise of rape, kidnapping, and sexual assaults against passengers in cases involving ride-hailing services. It is being carried out by drivers who work for established companies such as Uber.

Due to the outcry and concerns generated over passenger safety, Uber is now under further investigation and facing legal action.

The company received criticism and was the target of several lawsuits for the way it handled these situations. As a result, more stringent background checks for drivers and enhanced safety protocols are required. 

This article witnesses two recent cases that shed light on the growing threats of sexual assaults. 

Crossing Limits of Being Inhuman

An Uber driver in Toronto was found guilty of sexually abusing three female passengers and received a five-and-a-half -year prison sentence. After a trial, the driver, 38-year-old Taneem Aziz, was convicted guilty of three charges of sexual assault.

The assaults all happened on separate dates between 2018 and 2021, the court claimed. He went after young ladies who were trying to make their way home late at night.

It came to light that Aziz had not been hired as their driver through Uber in at least two of the cases. Instead, he offered his services without relying on the app and ‘lured’ them into his car.

The judge condemned Aziz for abusing the confidence his passengers had in him as a driver by hitting them. Justice Molloy further emphasized the victim’s fragility during those hours, alongside the major impact the assaults had on them. 

In addition, after the assaults, the three survivors were detained against their will for differing periods.

A four-hour trauma that included sobbing, screaming, and beating on the car windows was endured by one victim. Eventually, Aziz consented to let her go as long as she gave him $50, which she did.

Aziz was taken into custody and charged about two of the events. ‘A,’ ‘B,’ and ‘C,’ the victims, described their emotional suffering after the attacks in their court statements. They talked about having severe anxiety, having night terrors, and finding it hard to go to activities relevant to their jobs.

The Toxic After Effects of Intoxication

A New York woman alleging she was abducted and sexually assaulted has filed an Uber sexual assault lawsuit. It was done by an Uber-employed driver. The plaintiff Amber Moye, filed the complaint in Kings County, recounting the incident that took place in Brooklyn, New York. 

After a night out, Moye requested an Uber transport home, as per court filings. Having consumed alcohol, she fell asleep in the backseat of the car. When she woke up, she found the driver seated in the backseat with her, unsure of what had transpired.

Moye got out of the car right away and headed back home. She started having vaginal pain the next day, which made her believe she had been assaulted. Amber decided to seek medical attention and confided in her family.

Moye had been assaulted, as determined by a rape kit examination performed by officials at Brookdale Hospital Medical Centre. She was interviewed at the hospital by the special victims unit of the New York City Police Department.

Moye discussed the psychological and emotional effects of the attack in an interview with The Time. She stated that it had a significant negative influence on her well-being.

In response to the incident, an Uber representative sent a statement. It reiterated the company’s commitment to safety and denouncing sexual assault as a horrible crime.

They claimed that to improve platform safety, Uber keeps introducing novel features and guidelines. While the spokesperson couldn’t comment on ongoing litigation, they assured that any report of this nature is taken seriously.

For several years, there has been concern over the issue of ride-sharing drivers abusing their passengers sexually. In a safety report, Uber noted a decline in the number of assault cases that were recorded between 2019 and 2020.

Over 3,000 occurrences were reported throughout that time, thus the numbers were still significant. The figures from prior years were much higher, 5,981 instances were reported in 2017 and 2018.

Uber is coming under increasing pressure to strengthen its security protocols. The corporation is currently embroiled in about 100 sexual assault allegations, which have been combined into a single lawsuit in California.

A U.S. court panel also rejected Uber’s bid to have the word ‘sexual assault’ removed from the lawsuit’s title.

TorHoerman Law states that the Uber passenger sexual assault litigation presently has 276 cases. According to the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML), 24 additional cases were added in the last month.

As per the claims, Uber contributed to sexual assaults by improperly screening its drivers and failing to put the required safety precautions.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Why are assault cases becoming more prevalent in ride-sharing apps?

The growing prevalence of assault cases in ride-sharing apps can be attributed to several factors. These include insufficient driver background checks, inadequate safety measures, lack of proper driver training, and the potential for opportunistic behavior in a one-on-one transportation setting.

What steps have ride-sharing companies taken to address assault cases?

Ride-sharing companies have taken steps to address assault cases by implementing safety features within their apps. These may include options for sharing ride details with trusted contacts, in-app emergency assistance, driver identification verification, and user feedback systems to report safety concerns.

How do ride-sharing companies screen their drivers?

Ride-sharing companies typically conduct background checks on potential drivers, which may involve reviewing criminal records, driver history, and vehicle documentation. However, there have been instances where drivers with criminal backgrounds or previous complaints have slipped through the screening process, highlighting the need for more stringent vetting procedures.

What can passengers do to ensure their safety while using ride-sharing apps?

Passengers can take several precautions to enhance their safety when using ride-sharing apps. These include verifying the driver’s identity and vehicle details before getting in the car, sharing ride information with friends or family, sitting in the backseat, and trusting their instincts if they feel uncomfortable or unsafe during the ride. 

The concerning problem of passenger safety in ride-sharing apps has been brought to light by Uber assault incidents. The frequency of rape, kidnapping, and sexual assault cases involving drivers and passengers has caused major alarm. It has brought attention to the need for more robust safeguards for those utilizing these services.

To solve this urgent problem, hold offenders accountable, and foster an atmosphere where everyone can use ride-sharing applications with trust and peace of mind, legislators, ride-sharing firms, and society at large must act.

 

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