Breaking News Emails
Uber has banned riders and drivers from carrying guns, the company announced on Friday, a move that comes months after a driver for the ride-hailing app shot a gunman in Chicago.
"We seek to ensure that everyone using the Uber digital platform — both driver-partners and riders — feels safe and comfortable using the service," the company wrote on its website. "During a ride arranged through the Uber platform, Uber and its affiliates therefore prohibit possessing firearms of any kind in a vehicle."
In April, an Uber driver shot a man who was firing into a crowd of people in Chicago's Logan Square. The driver, who had a concealed-carry permit, was not charged with a crime.
Lyft, Uber's main competitor, also bans guns for drivers and passengers "regardless of whether possession is legal where they are" located.
"We support the right of companies like Uber to make informed choices about guns in their workspaces based on a realistic assessment of the risks," Jonathan Hutson, spokesperson for the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, told NBC News in an email.
"This is not about banning guns; it’s about keeping them out of the wrong hands and acting rationally based on real information, not the fear-mongering that the corporate gun lobby pushes just to sell more guns."
NBC News reached out to the National Rifle Association for comment but the organization did not respond.
Uber's announcement could raise questions about how much control the company has over its drivers. The company has insisted in the past that it's simply a platform that connects independent contractors with people who need rides.
Last week, the California Labor Commission ruled that a San Francisco-based Uber driver was an employee, not a contractor, which could have wider implications for the company's business model.