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Uber has agreed to settle a class action discrimination suit for $10 million

Mar 27, 2018 / Media Coverage / ReCode — Johana Bhuiyan

Three female software engineers filed a lawsuit against the company, saying Uber’s compensation practices were discriminatory.

Uber is trying to tie up its legal woes one by one under the tutelage of its new executive team led by CEO Dara Khosrowshahi. The company has agreed to settle a discrimination lawsuit filed last year by three female software engineers for $10 million.

The lawsuit represented a class of 420 engineers who identified as women or people of color and claimed that the company’s payment system was discriminatory.

The suit, filed in October 2017 — just months after Susan Fowler published her own account of discrimination at the company — alleged that Uber’s compensation and promotion structure favored men and white or Asian employees.

As part of the settlement, Uber has agreed to enhance its systems for compensations and reviews and to regularly report diversity metrics. Company executives will also participate in a twice-yearly review of diversity growth, the pipeline and efforts to increase the representation of women and people of color.

The plaintiffs who originally filed the lawsuit on behalf of the class — Ingrid Avendano, Ana Medina and Roxana Del Toro Lopez — worked in the same engineering department as Fowler. In fact, according to emails Recode previously obtained, both Avendano and Medina had vocalized their concern over the department’s mismanagement of Fowler’s issues on a number of occasions.

“This is a very strong settlement that provides real value to class members for the discrimination and harassment they suffered, while ensuring that Uber reforms its employment practices to prevent future discrimination and harassment,” Jahan Sagafi, the attorney representing the plaintiffs, said in a statement. “We look forward to monitoring those reforms until late 2021.”

A judge still has to determine whether to accept the terms of the settlement, but an Uber spokesperson pointed out that the company has made a number of changes to the way it handles pay, and emphasized diversity efforts made by the company that address many of the stipulations in the settlement.

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