Tech companies who count immigrant workers in their workforce are now scrambling to addressh the fallout of Donald Trump's blanket ban on immigrants from seven Muslim countries. The roster includes Uber, which has immediately allotted $3 million to aid its drivers who might be affected by the new policy.
Uber Immigration Assistance
In an email condemning the Trump executive order sent to all Uber drivers in the United States, CEO Travis Kalanick stressed his company's commitment to help those who came from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen.
"At Uber we've always believed in standing up for what's right," Kalanick said. "So it's important that as a community that we do everything we can to help these drivers."
Kalanick outlined four specific measures that Uber will undertake to assist affected drivers. First, he maintained that the company will provide a round-the-clock assistance for immigrant drivers who have left the United States and are now experiencing difficulty in getting back.
Compensating Lost Uber Earnings
Uber will further compensate affected drivers stranded overseas for their lost earnings. The move is aimed at helping their families, who now have to cope with the prospect of providing food and basic necessities without any source of income.
The on-demand ride-hailing service has previously revealed that a number of its drivers spend long periods of time in the United States and would go back to their country of origin to visit relatives for much-deserved work breaks.
Uber Legal Defense Fund
Aside from the previously cited assistance, Kalanick also promised to establish a $3 million legal defense fund to cover fees that will be incurred as affected drivers mount their immigration defense or appeal.
The Uber CEO also declared that his company will help put pressure on the U.S. government "to reinstate the right of U.S. residents to travel-whatever their country of origin-immediately."
To facilitate the process for drivers especially those who are banned from returning home, Uber has set up a dedicated application form in order to quickly avail of its legal assistance.
Uber has been mandated by a previous settlement to improve the working conditions of its drivers.
Kalanick And Trump
Kalanick's email also contained strong words for Trump and his policy, claiming that the immigration ban is wrong and unjust. One should note that he has been selected as one of Trump's economic advisors.
This association, which is already drawing criticism, is best demonstrated with the way Uber drivers did not join the one-hour taxi strike staged in response to Trump's immigration policy.
Some consumers have already launched a #DeleteUber campaign at Twitter after it was clear that Kalanick intends to still sit as member of Trump's economic advisory board.