Published: Mon, June 12, 2017
Business | By Max Garcia

Uber firings: over 20 staff dismissed amid sexual harassment investigation

Uber firings: over 20 staff dismissed amid sexual harassment investigation

More than 20 employees have been fired from Uber as part of an internal investigation, a company spokesperson told CNBC, after a former employee alleged gender bias and sexual harassment within the start-up. Bloomberg was first to report the news on Tuesday.

The report of the firings came from an attorney at the Perkins Coie law firm, which Uber hired to assist in a broader sexual harassment investigation at the company and which made a presentation at the company's weekly staff meeting Tuesday.

Uber also said it is offering a confidential helpline for employees to report concerns and has implemented a system to log and track all complaints. The now highly-publicized issues of sexism, coverups and mismanagement surrounding it all came into light in February after former Uber engineer Susan Fowler penned a post about her experience at the company on her blog.

Uber didn't mention the employees who were axed.

Uber did not immediately comment.

Uber's chief executive, Travis Kalanick, in February condemned the behavior Rigetti described, saying that it was "abhorrent and against everything Uber stands for and believes in".

Privately held Uber, valued at $68 billion, also told staff on Tuesday it would expand its employee relations unit to better investigate claims and that it would dramatically increase management training since most Uber managers were first-time bosses, one of the people said. Separately, Uber has brought on former attorney general Eric Holder to conduct an investigation into discrimination at Uber.

In total, 215 claims were investigated by Perkins Coie, with 100 resulting in no action, a source told NBC News. The firm is reviewing 215 human resources claims. A source who declined to be named said those terminated were removed due to a variety of reasons including harassment, bullying, or discrimination.

Uber has fired more than 20 people involved in a harassment probe, TechCrunch has confirmed.

While we won't know what those findings will be until next week, it seems there has been a systemic culture problem at Uber and it may indicate there is also a systemic issue with sexual harassment as well.

On Monday, as Fortune reported, Uber hired Harvard Business School professor Frances Frei as senior vice president of Leadership and Strategy.

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