California cities say Uber’s treatment of transgender and non-binary drivers may warrant legal action
City attorneys in Los Angeles, San Diego and San Francisco have warned Uber of potential “legal ramifications” after reports surfaced of the rideshare service’s alleged mistreatment of transgender and non-binary drivers.
In a letter dated February 2city prosecutors have asked Uber to reveal its naming protocols and verification processes for trans and non-binary drivers after a Los Angeles Times report in December claimed that trans and non-binary drivers’ accounts had been suspended or blocked because their photos and documents were deemed “fraudulent”. Many have tried to appeal but without success.
Transgender and non-binary people also have difficulty changing names in the Uber and UberEats apps, according to the LA Times report, noting several cases of “deadnaming”, or referring to a trans or non-binary person by their name. birth after changing name. as part of their gender transition.
Public display of someone’s dead name can not only be detrimental to their mental health, but can also pose serious safety concerns, especially as trans and gender non-conforming people face high rates of violence.
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Uber in June promised to take corrective action to address concerns raised by trans and non-binary drivers by allowing them “to display only their self-identified chosen first name, without requiring the display of their legal name.”
In July, Uber, in a letter to the ACLU of California, said it would review the accounts of transgender and non-binary drivers who had been deactivated, according to the LA Times report.
This month, city prosecutors called on Uber to detail steps it has taken to improve the treatment of trans and non-binary drivers and delivery people on its platforms. They also asked the company to provide all information related to background checks, fraud prevention and other policies involving verifying photos or names.
“Uber is trying to speak a good game when it comes to LGBTQ equality, but we have serious questions about whether it’s failing transgender drivers,” Los Angeles City Attorney Mike Feuer said. . said in a press release after sending the letter. “We intend to find out whether the reported incidents are isolated errors or part of a larger pattern that prevents some transgender drivers from accessing ridesharing opportunities.”
Uber did not immediately respond to Changing America’s request for comment, but an Uber spokesperson told the LA Times that he was reviewing the letter from the city attorneys.
“We recognize that for transgender and non-binary drivers and delivery people, the name and photo on their ID does not always reflect their true identity, and we take their concerns seriously,” the spokesperson said in a statement. communicated.
“Transgender and gender-nonconforming drivers shouldn’t have to put themselves in harm’s way or navigate a bureaucratic nightmare just to earn a living,” San Francisco City Attorney David Chiu said in a statement.
“Protecting drivers from workplace violence and ensuring equal opportunity at work are non-negotiable.”
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