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Rep. Christopher Smith (R-Hamilton) testifies in support of "Sami's Law," before the House Transportation Subcommittee on Highways and Transit on October 16, 2019.

Smith bill to protect ride-share users considered by House panel

Uber, Lyft are no-shows at hearing on Sami’s Law

By David Wildstein, October 16 2019 2:27 pm

Uber and Lyft were no-shows at a congressional hearing today on legislation sponsored by Rep. Christopher Smith (R-Hamilton) to protect ride-share users from sexual assault and other crimes

Smith’s bill comes seven months after Sami Josephson, a Robbinsville resident, was murdered by a predator pretending to be an Uber driver.

The parents of the woman, Seymour and Marci Josephson, worked with Smith to create “Sami’s Law,” which would push for all states to have front license plates and scannable codes so that a raider could verify their ride before entering a vehicle.

“These measures would not only ensure vehicle and driver identification for riders, assist law enforcement in tracking harmful offenders but protects drivers as well by confirming the passenger,” Smith said.  “Sami’s Law requires the GAO to study the incidence of assault and abuse of riders and drivers and the nature and specifics of any background checks of drivers and state laws that may require such background checks.”

Smith praised Gov. Phil Murphy and Senate President Steve Sweeney for a new law that is nearly identical to his federal legislation.

The Josephson’s and Smith met with Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, committee and subcommittee chairs and ranking members.

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