Uber Update: Uber, a ride-hailing platform has recently settled with the US Department of Justice over allegations that it discriminated against disabled passengers.
As part of the agreement, Uber will now offer several million dollars in compensation to more than 65,000 Uber users who were charged discriminatory fees due to disability.
"People with disabilities should not be made to feel like second-class citizens or punished because of their disability, which is exactly what Uber's wait time fee policy did," Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke of the Justice Department's Civil Rights Division, said in a statement.
The company will also pay $1,738,500 to more than one thousand riders who complained to Uber about being charged wait time fees because of disability, and $500,000 to other harmed individuals identified by the department.
In November 2021, the department filed a lawsuit alleging that Uber violated Title III of the ADA, which prohibits discrimination by private transportation companies like Uber.
According to the complaint, in April 2016, Uber began charging passengers wait time fees in some cities, eventually expanding the policy nationwide.
The wait time fees started two minutes after the Uber car arrived at the pickup location and were charged until the car began its trip.
The department's complaint alleged that Uber violated the ADA by failing to reasonably modify its wait time fee policy for passengers who, because of disability, needed more than two minutes to get in an Uber car.
Passengers with disabilities may need additional time to enter a car for various reasons.
Inputs from IANS