As an organisation, Uber has always upheld the values of diversity and inclusivity. The company celebrates people irrespective of their colour, background, gender or sexuality, and this reflects in their non-discriminatory hiring policies.
This International Transgender Day of Visibility, let’s tell you the inspiring stories of two transgender persons working at Uber - Rani and Arav.
Rani is India’s first transgender to drive for Uber Bhubaneswar. Getting here wasn’t easy, but she was determined to break societal barriers and march ahead on the path of sustainable employment.
Being a transgender, Rani’s life is synonymous with struggle. She shares a small space with 30 other members from her community and is a mother figure to them. As they have been rejected by their families, it is Rani who supports and guides them.
So far, her life has only been full of ups and downs. She started off by driving an autorickshaw, but faced a lot of rejection from riders. She then went on to become a volunteer ambulance driver and began transporting poor cancer patients to their treatment centre.
Rani’s relationship with Uber began when she started driving a fleet partner’s vehicle. Such was her dedication that she completed all trips with a 5-star rating. In fact, the riders were so impressed with her that they even invited her to their homes. However, deep within, Rani always nurtured a desire to drive her own car so she didn’t continue driving the fleet partner’s vehicle for long.
When Uber learnt of this, they started a fund-raising campaign for Rani and successfully managed to collect nearly Rs 1,86,000. Finally, after years of struggle, Rani had something to cheer about. She was able to buy her own vehicle and is now working as a driver partner with Uber since 16 Feb. As of today, she has completed upwards of 50 trips and this is just the beginning.
Of Dreams and Aspirations
A Delhi resident, Arav stays with his grandmother and has overcome several challenges that come with being a transgender in India. After school, he worked as a Program Manager with an NGO that focused on transgender empowerment. He has also driven professionally before joining Uber.
Arav completed his first Uber trip on 28 Nov 2018 and worked as a ‘driver under partner’ with one of the top fleet partners in Delhi NCR. However, as of now, he’s not active on the platform because he’s tending to his ailing grandmother. He’s keen on joining back soon and also aspires to have his own vehicle some day. Uber is in talks with their partners to help Arav get the best rates possible and make his dream come true.
Rani and Arav are breaking barriers and changing the way people perceive the transgender community, and major props to Uber for supporting them in this journey of theirs.