Uber’s new safety advisory board will meet for the first time next week, as a group of experts on everything from domestic violence to law enforcement will come together to give feedback to company executives.
These kinds of third-party advisory groups are pretty common. This one was put together by Uber’s new chief security officer Joe Sullivan, who previously led a similar effort at Facebook.
Uber’s ride-sharing business is inherently prone to security issues, as getting into any stranger’s car is going to make some people feel a little uneasy. The company is subject to significantly less government regulation than traditional taxi services, but Sullivan said there’s a lot that Uber is doing behind the scenes to keep passengers safe. He said rides are monitored by GPS in real-time, everyone’s identities are verified by the company and Uber is always looking at new measures it could take.
When asked how Uber’s safety record compares to traditional taxi services, Sullivan said the company isn’t sure because there hasn’t been much research into that area.
“While unfortunately, sometimes things do happen in the world of transportation, there are consequences for bad behavior and we have teams who are standing by, working with law enforcement,” Sullivan said during a media briefing call on Tuesday.
The advisory board will meet for the first time next week, taking a look at Uber’s business to better understand the way the company is operating today. It will then meet once every quarter to stay updated and make recommendations.
“I can assure you executives are very open to the feedback,” Sullivan said. “It was clear we weren’t going to be able to bring together these types of people if we weren’t going to be willing to listen to their feedback. So it’s my expectation they will give us honest, direct feedback and we will respond to it.”
Here is the complete list of Uber’s inaugural safety board:
- John Barton: Former deputy executive director of the Texas Department of Transportation
- Rob Chesnut: Senior vice president and general counsel at Chegg, former senior vice president of trust and safety at eBay
- Ed Davis: Former Boston police commissioner
- Jessica Eaglin: Associate professor of law at Indiana University
- Margaret Richardson: Former chief of staff to U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder
- Cindy Southworth: Executive vice president of the National Network to End Domestic Violence