Uber Releases Safety Data: 998 Sexual Assault Incidents, Including 141 Rape Reports in 2020 | CNN Business

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Even as its ridership was decimated by the pandemic in 2020, Uber recorded 141 reports of rape on its platform in the United States, the company revealed in its safety report released Thursday.

The 78-page report, which covers 2019 and 2020, is Uber’s second-ever release of safety incidents following a CNN investigation into assaults and sexual abuse on the ride-sharing platform a while ago. four years.

In its latest report, Uber said it received 3,824 reports of the five most serious categories of sexual assault, which range from “nonconsensual kissing of a nonsexual body part” to “nonconsensual sexual penetration” or rape. That’s down from 5,981 reports recorded in 2017 and 2018, according to its first report published in December 2019. Uber said passengers were the accused party 43% of the time in sexual assault incident reports. , like its previous report (45%). .

Notably, Uber’s total number of Uber trips in the two-year period fell to 2.1 billion, from 2.3 billion in the first report, and average trips rose from 3.1. million to 2.8 million per day. The company notes that the rate of sexual assault reports decreased by 38% between the first report and the second.

The 141 reports of rape in 2020 mark a drop from 2019, when it had 247 reports. During the same period, the total number of trips to the United States fell to 650 million in 2020, from 1.4 billion trips in 2019, according to the report. When it comes to reports of rape, these incidents accounted for 0.00002% of total trips.

“The evolution of the rate of reports of sexual assault over time may have been affected by a number of factors, including how the Covid-19 pandemic has changed the use of the platform as well as the Uber’s safety and transparency efforts,” Uber said in the report. “But each reported incident represents a heartbreaking lived experience for the survivor. Even one report is one report too many.

About 91% of rape victims were bikers and about 7% of victims were drivers. Women made up 81% of victims while men made up about 15% (nearly double that of the first report).

The report touts the effectiveness of the various security measures the company has implemented over the years. In 2018, it introduced ongoing driver background checks using technology that monitors new reports of criminal offenses. It said in the report that this feature has resulted in over 80,000 drivers being removed from its platform to date.

Uber also reported 20 deaths from physical assaults during the two-year period, 15 of which were passengers. Uber notes that the increase is “similar to national homicide and aggravated assault statistics from 2020 during the pandemic.” It reported that 101 motor vehicle deaths have occurred as a result of Uber-related crashes. The report claims that the death rate for motor vehicles connected to Uber’s platform in 2019 and 2020 is about “half the national average”.

Uber, followed by Lyft, first pledged to write a safety transparency report in response to a 2018 CNN survey of the platform’s drivers accused of sexual assault or abuse by passengers since 2014, based on publicly available data, including police reports. After CNN began asking about sexual assaults, Uber announced enhanced security measures such as a partnership with RapidSOS, a company that sends a passenger’s location and relevant information to a local police department. when the rider uses the emergency button in the Uber app, and the company revamped its approach to background checks.

Following Uber’s first report, the California Public Utilities Commission fined Uber $59 million for failing to provide additional data on sexual assaults and harassment incidents on its platform. The California regulator then significantly reduced the fine as part of a settlement agreement approved in December 2021, with Uber agreeing to pay $9 million for safety-related initiatives.

Lyft, meanwhile, released its first-ever safety report in October 2021, revealing that it received 4,158 reports of sexual assaults on its platform from 2017 to 2019. Lyft, unlike Uber, has not made public no commitment to publish future reports on the subject.

Earlier this month, Lyft agreed to a $25 million settlement with shareholders over statements and disclosures regarding its business, including specifically regarding assault-related incidents, before going public in 2019.

In March 2021, Uber and Lyft announced they would share the names of drivers who have been disabled for the most serious safety incidents, including sexual assaults, which range from non-consensual kissing of a non-sexual body part to rape. Information sharing is handled by a third-party consumer intelligence agency, Hire Right. Uber’s new report provides no update on this partnership and its results since its launch.

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