Food delivery companies settle race discrimination case in Arizona

The companies were served a Notice of Public Accommodations Charge of Discrimination by Arizona's Civil Rights Division

Food & Drinks

Photo by postcardtrip is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA
By: Alyssa Wilson

DoorDash, Uber Eats and Postmates settled a claim of race discrimination for promotions waiving delivery fees for Black-owned restaurants in Arizona. The state’s attorney general’s office claims the deal violated Arizona’s Civil Rights Act.  

The challenge, launched in 2020, was part of an initiative to support Black-owned businesses disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and in response to the murder of George Floyd, Fox Business reported.  

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Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich said the promotion was race discrimination. “Even with the best of intentions, corporations can do the wrong thing. Altering the price of goods or services based on race is illegal. My office opened these investigations and pursued these settlements to protect civil rights and ensure businesses offer their services and products based on equal and neutral criteria,” he said in a statement 

In the settlement, the food delivery companies have agreed not to offer financial incentives or price-related discounts to customers in the state based on an owner’s race, color, religion, sex, national origin or ancestry.  

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Uber Eats received more than 8,500 complaints and demands for arbitration over the policy. According to Tech Crunch, one claim stated that the company violated the Unruh Civil Rights Act and sought $12,000 and an injunction that would permanently prevent Uber from continuing the promotion for Black-owned restaurants.  

Uber released a statement to Fox Business to reiterate that it was proud to support Black-owned businesses and will continue to do it. “We have heard loud and clear from consumers that the ability to easily identify Black-owned restaurants on Uber Eats is a feature they want and appreciate,” a spokesperson said.  

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DoorDash pushed back against the state, pointing out state-funded initiatives and programs that benefit Black and Brown businesses, including a program with the Arizona Transportation Department that requires a certain percentage of contracts to be given to socially or economically disadvantaged companies.