1. A couple in Portland, Ore., are claiming a cab driver kicked them out halfway to their destination due to their sexual orientation.
2. Kate Neal and her girlfriend Shanako Devoll, as well as a third passenger, hailed the Broadway Cab from downtown Portland on Thursday evening.
4. Neal said of the incident:
The cab driver saw us being affectionate and took offense to that. He started shouting really hurtful, mean and really homophobic remarks at us. We really didn’t feel safe in the cab […] I feel sad. I feel vulnerable. It was a very humiliating experience. I’m a little angry obviously and I feel bad. I feel sad for the cab driver really.
5. The cab driver reportedly pulled over and let the women out on Interstate 84. According to Neal, another Broadway Cab came to pick them up, but refused to take them home.
The three women had to climb a fence and walk until they found a police officer to give them a ride.
6. The Broadway Cab company issued this statement on their Facebook page:
We are aware of a recent incident where allegations have been made regarding a driver’s comments and actions toward a couple riding in a taxicab. We are investigating this incident. The City of Portland has also opened their own independent investigation and Broadway Cab is cooperating fully with them. The involved driver’s authority to operate has been suspended pending the outcome of the investigation. At this time, we cannot comment on any other specifics regarding the incident or investigation.
I would like to take this opportunity to say that Broadway Cab is fully committed to the concept and practice of non-discrimination, equal opportunity, and diversity. This includes any form of discrimination based upon an individual’s sexual orientation. We take allegations of discrimination very seriously.
Broadway Cab is – proudly – one of the most diverse businesses around. We are diverse in every conceivable way –national origin, race, religion, age, sexual orientation, gender identification and political affiliation, to name a few. We celebrate diversity every day. Discrimination should not, cannot and will not be tolerated.
Thank you to the LGBTQ community for your on-going support of Broadway Cab.
7. The cab company was involved in the Portland Pride celebration this year.
8. The couple has since hired an attorney to represent them in the incident. The city of Portland has also opened an investigation into the matter.
The couple’s lawyer released this statement to KOIN 6: “My clients and I are still deciding the best course of action to achieve my client’s goals and [the] most favorable outcome to this situation.”
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