As the rise of Uber has begun to transform the transportation services industry, what has become clear is that for all of the support that the newcomer has garnered from a segment of the riding public, it has totally ignored the needs of the disabled. Uber has done so by claiming, against all evidence, that it is a technology company and not a Transportation Network Company-the generic name for most taxi and other car pick up services.
In response to Uber’s blatant disregard for the rights of the disabled-and its flouting of the American with Disabilities Act-a new group has been formed, New Yorkers for Equal Transportation Access (NYETA), to make sure that Uber conforms to the laws and regulations that every other Transportation Network Company must adhere to. No technological sleight of hand should allow this darling of Wall Street hedge funds to place itself outside of the law.
As NYETA spokesperson, Brad Gerstman points out;
“There is a reason why Uber is being sued all over the country. In jurisdictions across this country, disabled folks are being humiliated by Uber drivers-denied service because of their disability. That a company whose valuation has been estimated to exceed $50 billion feels it can treat the disabled as second class citizens underscore the arrogance and the greed of Uber and its high roller investors.”
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