Uber’s CEO has ordered an “urgent investigation” into claims of sexual harassment made by a former employee.
Susan Fowler, who worked for Uber as a site reliability engineer, said that in the year she worked for the ride-sharing app (between November 2015 and December 2016) that her grievances were dismissed by the HR department.
In a blog post entitled “Reflecting On One Very, Very Strange Year At Uber” Fowler details how she was propositioned by her manager through the company’s chat system.
When she brought her grievance to Human Resources, she was told her manager was a ‘high performer’ and that management wouldn’t feel comfortable”punishing him for what was probably just an innocent mistake on his part”. Fowler also wrote that she discovered she wasn’t the only woman at Uber who the manager had made inappropriate sexual advancements towards.
Uber CEO Travis Kalanick said that Fowler’s blog was the first time he’d heard of any such allegations at the company.
“What she describes is abhorrent and against everything Uber stands for and believes in,” Kalanick said in a statement. “We seek to make Uber a just workplace FOR EVERYONE (sic) and there can be absolutely no place for this kind of behaviour at Uber – and anyone who behaves this way or thinks this is OK will be fired.”
It’s shaping up to be a rather hard year for Uber. This is the second time the ride-sharing app company has been in the news for all the wrong reasons. In January the hashtag #DeleteUber started trending after people accused the company of exploiting a taxi protest caused by Donald Trump’s controversial executive order on immigration – known in the media as the ‘Muslim ban’.