Another shocking news from Uber- twenty employees are fired by the company over sexual harassment claims. The terminations were decided after investigations conducted by the company.
Dismissals were announced at the company-wide meeting held on Tuesday. The identities of the terminated employees are not revealed yet but media reports confirm that amongst 20 are some senior executives of the company as well.
The investigations were carried out by law firm Perkins Coie after allegations made by former Uber engineer, Susan Fowler. In her blog, she recounted sexual harassment and discrimination on the basis of gender during her tenure with Uber, which started in November 2015. After this incident, Travis Kalanick, CEO, Uber ordered an ‘urgent investigation’ at the organization.
Uber also facilitated an anonymous hotline for staff, where they could call and report sexual harassment incidents. Also, they can report bullying, discrimination and unprofessional behavior. But, the law firm, Perkins Coie found out during the investigation that no action was taken by the company against 100 reported incidents.
As reported by People Matters earlier, Travis Kalanick had also asked Uber’s Senior Vice President of Engineering Division – Amit Singhal to resign as the latter failed to disclose that he left Google because of sexual harassment allegations. Apparently, Google insider found the complaints against Singhal ‘credible’. This is one of the very few instances (or probably the first) where the company has voluntarily asked a Senior Executive to resign for a past allegation in a different company.
Besides Uber, several other companies have recently faced sexual harassment charges. A lawsuit was filed by a female employee working in Tesla, electric car maker, over the culture of gender discrimination and sexual harassment in the company. As per media, AJ Vandermeyden, the Tesla Engineer claims that her repeated complaints of discrimination and pervasive harassment were ignored by the company. As per her lawsuit, there was the use of inappropriate language, whistling, and catcalls. She was given less pay than men working in the company and fellow women engineers weren’t given deserving promotions.
Recently in another news, 21st Century Fox, which is the parent company of Fox News had spent around 45$ million (290 crores) in past nine months in settling sexual harassment cases.