Two Women File Complaints Against Uber Over Unequal Pay

Two women have filed complaints with the state of California against Uber for allegedly paying them less than men in similar roles.

The previously unreported claims were filed with the California Labor and Workforce Development Agency this summer through the Private Attorneys General Act, in what is typically the first step toward a public lawsuit. The law allows the two women to file their complaints on behalf of other women at Uber, similar to a class action lawsuit. Their complaints came to light through a public records request by The Information.

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In July, Uber’s human resources chief Liane Hornsey told employees that the company would level salaries based on job level, geographical location and tenure at Uber. The change was aimed at making salaries equal between men and women, and white and non-whites. The change came after former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder’s review of the company’s culture and policies, which suggested that Uber “comprehensively audit and review its practices, including for compliance with state and federal equal pay laws, to ensure compensation is set for legitimate business-related reasons.”

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Ms. del Toro Lopez’s complaint said that, among other issues, “male technical employees made disparaging and discriminatory comments about her, including that the only reason she was successful at the Company was because she is ‘hot.’ ”