Although many professions – teachers, plumbers, electricians, architects, bus drivers and taxi drivers – require it in order to establish a person’s identity, Ride-Sharing company Uber refuses to fingerprint drivers.
“You’d have to be crazy to employ people who haven’t been fingerprinted because you’d only be one disaster away from being sued,” said Georgia State Rep. Allan Powell.
Without a fingerprint check, there is no guarantee that an Uber driver is who he says he is and there is no way to accurately know if he has a criminal history.
In case after case throughout the U.S. – Houston, Los Angeles, Chicago, Boston, Philadelphia, Atlanta, San Francisco, Washington, DC – passengers are reporting alleged attacks by Uber drivers. Many of the alleged victims are women.
When a woman reported being allegedly raped by an Uber driver in Houston, it turned out he’d served 14 years in federal prison. When the City of Houston checked Uber drivers’ backgrounds, they turned up numerous violations that should have prevented them from passing a thorough background check:
The charges include indecent exposure, DWI, possession of a controlled substance, prostitution, fraud, battery, assault, robbery, aggravated robbery, possession of marijuana, theft, sale of alcohol to a minor, traffic of counterfeit goods, trademark counterfeit, possession of narcotics, and driving with a suspended license.
San Francisco DA George Gascon has called Uber’s background check “completely worthless” because it fails to fingerprint drivers. He is suing the company for misleading the public.
According to a recent study from the University Transportation Research Center, Uber and Lyft’s background checks are 43 times less effective than fingerprint-based background checks required by all major Texas cities. The fingerprint-based standard is a requirement that taxi, limousine, and para-transit companies have followed for decades.