Recently, Uber drivers have been voicing their concerns over the amount of passengers who refuse to wear masks while inside their vehicles. Furthermore, while Uber technically states that a rider must wear a mask at all times within a rideshare vehicle, they have done little to enforce this rule. This, unfortunately, leaves drivers in an uncomfortable position when they encounter a rider who refuses to wear a mask. Uber drivers either have to risk their safety and let the passenger ride without a mask or try to enforce Uber’s mask wearing rule, often at their own expense.
One NYC Uber driver shared a startling story on our forum about how he was deactivated for simply asking passengers to wear masks in his car. Apparently, one of his anti-mask riders made a complaint about his demeanor to Uber. Uber, who tends to side with passengers whenever a dispute arises, deactivated this driver who had given over 17,000 rides during his Uber career. Sadly, this story is fairly common for Uber drivers who feel Uber has placed the burden of telling customers to wear masks on the drivers’ shoulders.
That might all be changing now however, as Uber is rolling out a new mask check for riders. Now, if a driver spots a rider without a mask and reports them to Uber, they will be required to take a mask selfie before using Uber again. Currently, drivers have to take a selfie showing their mask is on everytime as a prerequisite to signing on to the app.
Uber is not requiring all riders to take mask selfies, this will only be mandated if a customer has been reported by a driver. Further, all riders and drivers can now cancel their trip without penalty if the other person is not wearing a mask.
“We firmly believe that accountability is a two-way street,” Sachin Kansal, Uber’s global head of safety, said in a blog post.
The new rider mask verification feature will roll out in US and Canada by the end of September with plans to extend to Latin America and other countries after that.