Rideshare company Uber has agreed to pay 56 current and former employees about $33,900 each or $1.9 million to settle claims of gender discrimination, harassment and hostile work environment. According to a CNN news report, in addition to the $1.9 million, another $5.1 million is to be divided among more than 480 workers, including the 56 who are receiving the other payouts. The class action lawsuit against Uber was filed against Uber in October 2017 by three Latina engineers who said they were paid less than their white or Asian male colleagues.
Unfair and Illegal Practices
The women said Uber used a discriminatory “stack ranking” system that undervalued female workers and employees of color who receive lower rankings in spite of equal or better performance. Uber also set employee pay based on past compensation, which inherently puts women at a disadvantage. As part of this lawsuit, 56 workers came forward to tell their stories of discrimination and harassment at Uber.
They are a subset of a broader class that includes about 480 women and underrepresented minorities who worked in certain software engineering jobs. That broader pool with get about $10,700 each based on their title and length of employment. In July, Uber said it bumped up to make sure employees, regardless of their gender or race, are paid equally based on their location, job and tenure.
Uber said it also re-evaluated employee salaries after paying bonuses in March. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) launched an investigation into Uber last August, interviewing former and current employees and looking at internal documents relating the company’s wages and hiring practices.
How Class Action Lawsuits Help
This class action lawsuit against Uber is an example of how class action lawsuits can help put an end to discriminatory practices in the workplace, which create a hostile work environment. In this case, this lawsuit brought forth by employees who were the victims of harassment and discrimination, helped end such practices at the company, which changed its policy and practices to make sure all employees, regardless of gender or race, are treated equally when it comes to wages, promotions and other opportunities.
While one employee alone could not have done much against a large corporation, when 56 employees banded together and filed a class action lawsuit, it packed a punch and had the desired effect. If you are facing harassment, discrimination or retaliation in the workplace, you may have a valid class action lawsuit. Contact an experienced California employment lawyer to obtain more information about pursuing your legal rights.