Uber has been mired with scandals since its inception in 2009, although its popularity has not waned much, even in light of more competition such as Lyft and Via. Even as lawsuits pile up, and stories of drivers accosting passengers and vice-versa abound, notwithstanding lawsuits alleging sexual assaults, Uber has remained at the top. The constant scrutiny regarding safety has always been present but it appears Uber, and its new CEO Dara Khosrowshahi, are taking steps towards making both passengers and drivers safer when using this ride hailing platform.
A Chicago Suntimes article has reported Uber hiring a company called Checkr to conduct background checks on its employed drivers, a move that Chicago Alderman Anthony Beale (9th) has called an act of “self-preservation” on the part of Uber. Personal injury attorney, Peter Zneimer, finds it reassuring that a company as large and popular as Uber is addressing the growing safety concerns the general public and its consumers believe are pressing issues. Though, Uber is increasingly pressured to subject its drivers through more rigorous background checks, including fingerprinting, as cab drivers have to undergo, they do not intend to do so. Nevertheless, hiring Checkr to perform annual background checks is a start.
Chicago as a busy city uses these on-demand mobile apps heavily especially during the weekends, when ridership is at its highest and when the city is at its rowdiest. Consumers use these for the convenience but safety is of the utmost importance at the end of the day. The lawyers of Zneimer & Zneimer P.C. believe that in the long run, it will benefit Uber to perform background checks as consumers can at least rely they’re not being driven around by a sex offender or someone with a long, violent criminal history.