Over the course of the past few years, Uber has really made its mark on society. According to Urban Dictionary, Uber is a ridesharing service based in San Francisco. The company operates by using a smartphone application to connect passengers with drivers of vehicles for hire.
The nationally aired ads we often see for Uber mainly consist of women taking an Uber for nights out, whether that be the ride there or the ride home. To add to that, Uber actually teamed up with Mothers Against Drunk Driving as well to launch their designated driver campaign, in which they urged women to take an Uber instead of driving under the influence.
As a result of this, women are doing just as Uber wishes... taking the designated driver rides home. The service has had a great impact on our society, allowing affordable transportation at almost any time of day.
Except, there's a horrible plot twist that has now been incorporated. Women, especially ones under the influence, are being taken advantage of in these designated "safe" rides. Some people even claim that their drivers drugged them by offering them a water, which is seemingly normal... until it isn't.
What's even scarier is that college campuses across the nation use this each and every day.
CNN recently did an investigation with Uber, revealing that 103 of its drivers (across 20 major cities) have been accused of sexual assault over the past four years and that 31 drivers have been convicted.
One of the cases that specifically stood out to me was a 54-year-old man that was accused of/convicted of raping an Uber passenger that was passed out in his back seat. She escaped and called 911, leading police to later arrest him and find video proof of at least 9 other women/young adults being sexually assaulted or abused by him in the past five years. On top of being convicted of the rape of the original passenger, he now has 33 other counts against him.
I repeat, 33 counts.
That is insane. It is reckless, scary, and intimidatingly close to home as I, myself, have taken numerous Uber rides by myself as well.
My friends and I use the service to get around campus all the time. It is an extremely convenient app and I hate to see it being used for such horrible things.
I don't care if the rider is under the influence, tired, crying, or even having the best day of her life...
It is not okay to take advantage of another person. Ever.
As of right now, only 14% of Uber drivers are women. Although Uber has pledged to have 1,000,000 women drivers by 2020, that is still a pretty high number of male drivers, considering Uber just reached its millionth driver in the past couple years.
So thank you to the drivers that ARE doing a great job. Thank you for keeping people safe and off the streets at night. Thank you for taking us to get food at our soonest convenience. And thank you for being part of such a revolutionary company.
Now, let's work together to get every single driver on board with that.