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Reports: Uber fires 20 as result of harassment investigation

By Doug G. Ware

June 6 (UPI) -- Uber has fired 20 employees stemming from a recent inquiry into an alleged culture of harassment at the ride-sharing company.

The company announced the terminations to employees during a meeting at its San Francisco headquarters Tuesday, The New York Times reported, citing a current employee.

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Neither the fired workers' identities nor their roles with the company were revealed.

Uber's workplace culture has been the subject of two independent investigations spurred by a former employee's blog post earlier this year. Engineer Susan Fowler said she endured sexual harassment at the company and the human resources department didn't do anything about it.

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"On my first official day rotating on the team, my new manager sent me a string of messages over company chat. ... He was trying to stay out of trouble at work, he said, but he couldn't help getting in trouble, because he was looking for women to have sex with," she wrote in February. "It was so clearly out of line.

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"Upper management told me that he 'was a high performer' and they wouldn't feel comfortable punishing him for what was probably just an innocent mistake on his part."

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Tuesday's firings were based on recommendations from the law firm Perkins Coie, a person familiar with the matter told CNN Tech -- also noting that multiple senior-level Uber employees have been dismissed as a result of the investigation.

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Perkins Coie has so far reviewed more than 200 human resources claims by Uber employees. It's taken no action in 100 cases and continues to evaluate 57 others. Additionally, 31 employees are undergoing counseling or training and seven have received written warnings, Bloomberg reported Tuesday.

Another investigation into the matter is being led by former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder. That review has submitted recommendations to a subcommittee of Uber's board of directors, but they have not yet been revealed.

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