Bus driver suspended for refusing to drive vehicle with pride colours

Bus driver is suspended after refusing to drive a vehicle with gay-pride rainbow colours on it as it ‘promoted homosexuality’

  • Rebecca Sears, 19, made a complaint against the driver at Norwich Bus Station
  • She said it was a ‘ridiculous reason’ not to drive the double-decker vehicle
  • Go East Anglia runs the Konectbus and said a full investigation was under way

A bus driver has been suspended after refusing to drive a vehicle which celebrated gay pride.

Passenger Rebecca Sears, 19, claimed a Konectbus driver at Norwich Bus Station insisted on swapping buses as the one he was in ‘promoted homosexuality’.

She said that the driver, who appeared to be in his 50s with grey hair, was referring to the vehicle’s service number which featured the colours of the gay-pride rainbow flag. 

A bus driver has been suspended after refusing to drive a vehicle which celebrated gay pride by showing rainbow colours within the vehicle’s service number

Rebecca said: ‘He said we have to wait a minute, he said I am not driving this bus because it promotes homosexuality.

‘I was standing with two other women and we kind of thought he was joking, in a weird way. Like we were just thinking is it really that big of a deal.

‘I thought it was all just quite bad, it made us 10 minutes late – which isn’t bad when its more a legit reason but for that sort of reason it is.’ 

Rebecca went to the bus station’s front desk to report what had happened as the driver moved to another double-decker vehicle and allowed passengers to board.

Rebecca Sears, 19, made a complaint against the driver at Norwich Bus Station. She said he appeared to be in his 50s with grey hair

She added: ‘I said to them that he had gone to swap buses and that it is ridiculous because that is just a ridiculous reason.

‘You are stopping people from getting home for such a ridiculous reason. It is really bad.’

Go East Anglia, which runs the Konectbus service, said the driver involved has been suspended and that a full investigation was under way. 

She added: ‘I just hope that he hasn’t said that in front of somebody that is gay.

‘I would hate to think he would say something to them.

‘He didn’t know if I was gay or the other two women I was with. He just out right said it.’

Rebecca, a sixth form student, took to Twitter to share a picture of the driver.

In the caption she wrote: ‘Today I was waiting for the 501 bus to Thickthorn and we were told by the driver we had to wait for him to swap buses as ‘this bus promotes homosexuality and I refuse to drive it’ due to the multicoloured ‘501’ sign. 

‘Norwich doesn’t appreciate homophobia.

‘I complained to the staff at the station and they were already aware of who I was talking about, so why has nothing been done? 

‘I’m aware everyone is entitled to their own views however, if you can’t do your job properly because of your bigotry, maybe you need rethink your choices.

‘Please call out a system that allows homophobes and bigots to get away with things like this, it’s 2019 people need to grow up and be more accepting.’

Go East Anglia, which runs the Konectbus service, said a full investigation was under way and the driver has since been suspended

Konectbus replied to her Twitter post and stated: ‘Many thanks for getting in touch about this incident.

‘Our management team has been made aware and it is being taken very seriously. We find this attitude, behaviour and level of customer service completely unacceptable.

‘As a company we do not condone any behaviour from our drivers that does not support this view.

‘The driver involved in this incident has been suspended and a full investigation is underway.’

Norwich had recently held a Pride event on July 27 which was just a couple of days before the incident

A spokesperson for Go East Anglia said: ‘We particularly want all customers of whatever background or sexual orientation to feel comfortable on our services.

‘As a company we do not condone any behaviour from our drivers that does not support this view.

‘The driver involved in this incident has been suspended and a full investigation is underway.’

Norwich had recently held a Pride event on July 27 which was just a couple of days before the incident.

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