Two women who claim they were sexually assaulted by their Uber drivers filed a lawsuit in a Northern California court Thursday against the ride-hailing company, CBS reported. Named only as Jane Doe 1 and Jane Doe 2 in the lawsuit, the women were suing over passenger safety, claiming the company does not perform adequate background checks on its drivers.
In the 52-page complaint, the women from Connecticut and Florida, respectively, said there were “systemic deficiencies regarding Uber’s safety measures concerning drivers.” The complaint also alleged that by marketing to young women who have been out drinking and need a safe ride home, Uber was “instead putting these women at risk” by not screening its drivers closely enough.
One of the Uber drivers was arrested by Massachusetts police in February for assaulting Jane Doe 1 and another driver was charged with assaulting Jane Doe 2 in South Carolina in August.
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Douglas Wigdor, an attorney representing the women, likened Uber to “electronic hitchhiking.” The lawsuit was seeking unspecified damages for the two women.
“They’re hoping that Uber will change its policies and practices to not have this happen to another woman,” Windsor told the Boston Globe.
The lawsuit has called for Uber to mandate video cameras in its drivers' cars and allow female passengers to select female drivers when ordering a ride.
Uber, which was founded in 2009, has been hit with other lawsuits as well as more claims of drivers sexually assaulting passengers. The company responded with a statement over the most recent case.
“We proactively worked with law enforcement in Massachusetts and South Carolina at the time to share information and aid their investigations,” said a statement sent to CBS Boston. “Both drivers have been permanently removed from the platform.”
Uber also told CBS that one of the two drivers had passed two different background checks.