Uber has agreed to pay $ 9 million to the California Public Services Commission (CPUC) for refusing to disclose information about sexually assaulted drivers and drivers and paid a separate $ 150,000 fine under Thursday’s settlement agreement.
The CPUC will provide $ 5 million of this money to the California Victims Compensation Fund, and the remaining $ 4 million will be “targeted at physical and sexual violence in the passenger transportation industry.” San Francisco magazine, which will report on the agreement on Thursday. Uber now also provides information about the attacks to the CPUC, although it will delete any potentially identifying information.
CPUC Uber was originally fined $ 59 million in December 2020 and threatened to suspend permission to operate in the state after the company did not answer questions a condemning safety report it published the previous year. This 84-page report provided summary information on thousands of sexual assaults in the United States in 2017 and 2018 during trips made through the company’s equestrian service.
Uber called the report “confusing,” but declined to provide more detailed information about the attacks when asked by the CPUC. The CPUC also wanted more information on who wrote the report at the company, especially when Uber admitted in a fine text that it “did not assess or take a position on whether any of the reported cases actually occurred”. (The CPUC has regulatory powers over California transportation companies and regularly investigates complaints about them.)
Uber refused to answer questions from the CPUC and provide information on the grounds that it would endanger the survivors of sexual violence. It appealed the CPUC’s fine in January, calling the $ 59 million fine “extraordinary” and arguing that the CPUC was a “penalis[ing] Uber in good faith for his efforts to stay with the survivors. ”