Opinion: Dear UberEATS Please Take A Sociology 101 Class

It’s 2017, yet surprisingly (unsurprisingly?) you don’t have to look far to see sexism rear its ugly head in everyday life. From siblings trying to ‘toughen up’ their younger brother, to your mother telling you that “Girls shouldn’t use that type of language.” to the blatant assignment of gender roles in advertisements, we see examples of gender stereotyping on a daily basis.

So, honestly, it didn’t come as much of a surprise when, come Sunday morning, UberEATS Bengaluru decided on a horribly sexist promotion for “Wife Appreciation Day”. I wonder, did Uber actually think, “How can we disregard all the progress that has been made for gender equality while simultaneously reinforcing gender stereotypes and use that as a promotion?”

Opinion: Dear UberEATS Please Take A Sociology 101 Class

“Order on UberEATS and let your wife take a day off from the kitchen,” the promo said. Oh, and they also threw in a Rs. 100 off on an order of above Rs. 400. You know, as a reward for their consideration, because we all know that a woman’s place is in the kitchen, and how gracious of them to allow us a day off.

Uber is already reeling from accusations of sexism and discrimination from an ex-employee and this promotion is great clarification on Uber’s stance on what a woman’s role should be. For goodness sakes, it’s 2017 and, quite frankly, Uber (after all the flak you’ve already received), you should know better.

Especially in a country like India, where girls aren’t given access to education, where we’re told, “girls only pass time in college till marriage, that’s why they need higher grades for admission”, where the length of our clothes determine whether or not ‘we deserved it’, where dowry deaths, honor killings, and female foeticide happen every single day.

Legitimising gender stereotypes is never okay, especially when you’re seeking to profit from it. Are you seriously telling me that not a single person had a problem with the promotion confining women to the kitchen and needing their husband’s permission to take a break? If that’s the case, then UberEATS has an even bigger problem on their hands.

While Uber did apologise for the promotion, the damage has already been done. Perhaps Sociology 101 should be implemented into Uber’s employee training programme, because, maybe then you’ll realise that a “woman’s place” is where ever we want it to be. And, just FYI, we don’t need your permission, thank you very much!