Arianna Huffington is speaking out publicly amid the investigation into alleged sexual harassment at ride-hailing company Uber.
Huffington, a member of Uber’s board, posted an update to the company’s blog emphasizing her plans to hold Uber accountable during the independent review and work to improve gender and diversity issues in the workplace. The post was published after an all-hands meeting on Tuesday that included Uber CEO Travis Kalanick and the company’s recently hired HR chief, Liane Hornsey.
“Travis spoke very honestly about the mistakes he’s made — and about how he wants to take the events of the last 48-hours to build a better Uber,” writes Huffington in the post. “It was great to see employees holding managers accountable. I also view it as my responsibility to hold the leadership team’s feet to the fire on this issue.”
Tuesday’s meeting follows a former employee’s allegations of sexual harassment in the company’s engineering department. In a post over the weekend, Susan Fowler claimed she and other women were repeatedly harassed and that their complaints to HR were ignored or met with retaliation.
In response to Fowler’s post, Uber CEO Travis Kalanick hired former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder to conduct an independent investigation. Huffington and Liane Hornsey, Uber’s recently-hired chief human resources officer, will also be involved in the review.
Kalanick said Huffington and Hornsey would meet with small groups of Uber employees after Tuesday’s all-hands meeting to get direct feedback about the culture at the company.
The company spent an hour talking about women in the workplace and the independent review, Huffington said in her blog post. No details were released on Kalanick’s reference to mistakes he’s made. The Uber CEO said when the news broke that the alleged harassment was “against everything we believe in.”
“Change doesn’t usually happen without a catalyst,” Huffington wrote. “I hope that by taking the time to understand what’s gone wrong and fixing it we can not only make Uber better but also contribute to improvements for women across the industry.”
Uber’s chief executive officer, at times with tears in his eyes, apologized for a lack of diversity in the company’s workforce and for not properly responding to employee complaints, while those in attendance lobbed tough, pointed questions, said the people, who asked not to be identified discussing internal matters.