Discrimination is bad (and illegal) on its face, but Uber and Lyft’s involvement in government services makes these findings especially problematic. The companies can provide cash-strapped municipalities with quick, flexible solutions to their transportation problems. They can even increase ridership on local public transit systems. For governments, the point of working with Uber and Lyft—as with all public transportation—is to help more people get around, regardless of race, gender, disability, or socioeconomic status.
Now, those alliances make the sharing economy’s implicit bias problem a government service’s implicit bias problem.