In New York City, a new bill has been proposed to combat the rise in sexual assaults among female cab riders by requiring anti-sexual assault training from drivers. In 2015, the number of rapes against women in taxis jumped to 14, up from 10 the previous year.
The new City Council bill proposed by Council members Laurie A. Cumbo and Helen K. Rosenthal on Wednesday would require drivers to learn the “laws and criminal penalties against sexual assault, and how to respond if they witness a possible assault,” according to the Daily News. The bill’s lessons would target all NYC hired drivers, including yellow and green cabs, black cars along with Lyft and Uber’s contractors. It puts “people on notice that this is not tolerated,” said Councilwoman Rosenthal this week.
This proposal follows Uber’s convoluted non-rebuttal to Buzzfeed’s report that the company received five rape claims and 170 claims of sexual assault between December 2012 and August 2015, some of which they dismissed as typos. Police Commissioner Bill Bratton has also suggested women develop a kindergarten approach to going home and use the “buddy system,” which sounds a bit like victim blaming.
Allan Fromberg, a spokesperson for the Taxi and Limousine Commission, said in a statement: “We appreciate the goal of helping our city combat sexual assault, and look forward to discussing the proposed details with the Council.”
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