It seemed for a time like Uber was untouchable. That idea has been changing lately in the wake of some very negative press, including reports of a former staffer’s claim of sexual assault at work. But the latest controversy surrounding the tech giant’s head office might be what finally convinces you to quit the app once and for all (if you haven’t already).
In a newly leaked party memo from 2013, Uber’s CEO Travis Kalanick apparently gave employees explicit instructions on sexual engagements during a party the company was hosting in Miami to celebrate its early success.
While the first part of the “Miami letter” asks employees to be mindful of their alcohol or drug intake (including a $200 “vomit fee” for those who get wasted), the shocking part comes when Kalanick talks about sexual contact between employees.
This is where it gets sticky for Uber. While it’s fine for companies to have strict rules surrounding interoffice romance, for a company that has had at least one executive leaving his job due to sexual misconduct, the tone of this note was off-putting for many who read it. The company is currently hosting two separate law firms to determine exactly why it’s being plagued with such damning sexual assault allegations (which led to the firing of 20 staffers this week). Some point to the “Miami letter” as the memo that set the tone for the entire company’s “party” atmosphere.
“Do not have sex with another employee,” he writes, “UNLESS a) you have asked that person for that privilege and they have responded with an emphatic ‘YES! I will have sex with you’ AND b) the two (or more) of you do not work in the same chain of command. Yes, that means that Travis will be celibate on this trip. #CEOLife #FML.”
Uber has yet to respond to the leak of the “Miami letter,” but while investigations continue, the law firms involved are looking for an interim co-CEO.
Does this memo change the way you feel about Uber? Tell us @BritandCo!
(h/t USA Today; photo via Pascal Le Segretain/Getty)