Uber to create $3M legal defense fund for drivers affected by “wrong and unjust” ban

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Uber says it will create $3 million defense fund to help cover legal, immigration and translation costs for drivers affected by Trump’s immigration and travel ban, which Uber CEO and founder Travis Kalanick calls “wrong and unjust” in a new note shared to Facebook and Uber’s newsroom. The post outlines in more detail Uber’s commitment to assist drivers impacted by the executive order, which Kalanick made Saturday in a prior post.

The original post by Kalanick noted that the company was reaching out to employees affected, and working to identify and render aid to drivers affected by the measures. It also noted that Kalanick would be bringing his concerns regarding the measures to the attention of Trump at a meeting of the White House economic advisory group on which Kalanick sits happening this coming Friday. Sunday’s statement is much stronger in terms of criticizing the immigration measures directly, and not just detailing steps to lessen their impact on Uber’s employees and drivers.

Uber received criticism on Saturday for continuing to service JFK during a one-hour taxi service pick-up outage. Meanwhile, rival Lyft has committed $1 million to the ACLU, and its founders came out strongly in opposition to the measures by Trump’s White House.

Here’s the full text of the post by Kalanick on Sunday:

Standing up for the driver community:

Following up from my post yesterday https://www.facebook.com/traviskal/posts/1331814113506421.

Here’s the email I’m sending to drivers affected by President Trump’s unjust immigration and travel ban:

At Uber we’ve always believed in standing up for what’s right. Today we need your help supporting drivers who may be impacted by the President’s unjust immigration ban.

Drivers who are citizens of Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria or Yemen and live in the US but have left the country, will not be able to return for 90 days. This means they won’t be able to earn money and support their families during this period.

So it’s important that as a community that we do everything we can to help these drivers. Here’s what Uber will do:

– Provide 24/7 legal support for drivers who are trying to get back into the country. Our lawyers and immigration experts will be on call 24/7 to help.
– Compensate drivers for their lost earnings. This will help them support their families and put food on the table while they are banned from the US;
– Urge the government to reinstate the right of U.S. residents to travel – whatever their country of origin – immediately;
– Create a $3 million legal defense fund to help drivers with immigration and translation services.

If you are a driver or a friend or family member of someone who has been affected, please contact us at: https://goo.gl/forms/AIJTivooFxuExX1p1.

Uber is a community. We’re here to support each other. Please help Uber to help drivers who may be affected by this wrong and unjust immigration ban.

-Travis