Uber Crashes into Discrimination Lawsuit

Driving to court

The popular car service, Uber, is being driven to court after they were hit with a discrimination lawsuit. Uber Technologies Inc is being accused of discriminating against blind people by refusing to transport guide dogs, a federal judge ruled. The case is brought against Uber by the National Federation of the Blind of California. This is not the first time that the company has faced complaints on how it pays drivers, treats passengers and ensures safety. Uber has an estimated worth of $40 billion and has its mobile ride-sharing service in more than 270 cities and geographic areas in 56 countries.

The U.S. Magistrate Judge Nathanael Cousins in San Jose, California stated that the National Federation of the Blind of California and the plaintiffs could pursue a claim that Uber Technologies Inc is technically a travel service. Being a travel service Uber would be subjected to potential liability under the Americans with Disabilities Act. Uber attempted to argue the claim by the plaintiffs stating that they lacked standing to pursue a lawsuit under the ADA and the state laws that protect the disabled. The judge rejected the Ubers argument and was given a specific amount of days to respond to the complaint. “Uber is a very popular service, and it is important for riders with service animals to be able to use it like anyone else,” said Aaron Zisser, a lawyer for Disability Rights Advocates in Berkeley, California who helped bring the case.

All in all Uber is seeking to dismiss the case brought against them. In a statement made by the company, Uber drivers are told and expected to comply with all laws regarding to transportation of service animals under the company policy. “The Uber app is built to expand access to transportation options for all, including users with visual impairments and other disabilities,” the company said. There are more than 40 incidents where services animals were refused, which it is required by federal law that all taxi services are to carry service animals for blind riders. Uber said it is on the verge of “expanding accessibility” for the disabled and that claim has not merit. Hopefully this suit can be settled quickly and all users of Uber are serviced equally.