These Gay Men Were Kicked Out Of An Uber Because Of Their Sexuality

When Aaron Brown, 27, and his close friend finished celebrating Mardi Gras, they decided that taking an Uber would be the safest way home.

If only he knew what exactly they were in store for.

As their car was whizzing down the busy Eastern Distributor, Aaron’s friend Ryan Ottey rested his head on his shoulder and kissed his forehead. Suddenly, everything in the car changed.

The Uber driver was irate and ordered the pair out of his vehicle.

“He kissed me on the forehead and the driver immediately turned around and said ‘Not in my car, I’m not driving you anymore, get out of my car,’” Aaron says.

Initially, both Aaron and Ryan assumed it was some kind of bizarre prank.

“We were just dumbfounded and thought it was a joke so we questioned him and asked why.

“He just repeated himself and said ‘I can’t drive you anymore, this is my car and I’m not driving that’ – talking about us,’” Aaron says.

At this point, the pair quickly began taking video. They captured footage of the driver saying, “I don’t want to take you, you can book another cab.”

The car then abruptly stopped, and the two were forced out on the busy highway.

“We felt shocked and upset, something so innocent and to be treated like scum. Mardi Gras is a time for celebration and acceptance, this behavior is unacceptable. That driver should not have been on the road at all,” Aaron sums up in a brief media statement.

Uber has since made an apology to Aaron, saying that this represented an “irregular” ride.

“This isn’t the regular Uber experience, and you shouldn’t have to put up with this kind of inappropriate behavior. [We] will be looking into this trip and taking the appropriate steps to ensure this experience doesn’t continue. Our technology is a two-way street for both riders and driver-partners, and driver-partners that behave inappropriately may have their access removed.”

An Uber spokesman also told Australian media that the company does not tolerate discrimination.

But Aaron says the apology, which was delivered as a message in response to his complaint on the app, left something to be desired.

“Uber’s response seemed very generic, I expected a phone call at least to double check that we were okay.”

Uber often makes these cases more complicated than they need to be, because they technically have a policy that prohibits passengers from flirting or touching each other while in the car.

There was another high profile case in 2018 where a driver also dumped a gay couple on the side of a busy street after sharing a brief kiss. Uber responded by saying they needed to “investigate” the situation because the driver also reported the passengers for violating the no-PDA policy.

This policy almost certainly isn’t enforced evenly. Just speaking anecdotally, I’ve been in many Ubers with straight couples who have shared an affectionate touch or quick kiss. Nothing has been said. I totally understand being able to ask couples who refuse to stop engaging in sexual contact to leave, but this policy seems absurd and is continually leading to these unfair situations for LGBQT+ persons.

Photo Credit: Instagram via Aaron Brown

38 comments

Kevin B
Kevin B5 days ago

dreadful

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Ellie L
Ellie L6 days ago

Thanks

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Sarah A
Sarah A8 days ago

tyfs

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Melisa B
Melisa B10 days ago

thanks for posting

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Jan S
Jan S15 days ago

Thank you

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Amparo Fabiana C

Some people cannot accept and evolve in their ideas, if they see them flirting or kissing.

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Gino C
Gino C20 days ago

Thank you for posting

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Paula A
Patricia A24 days ago

Thank you

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Christine V
Christine V26 days ago

Terrible!

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Peggy B
Peggy B28 days ago

TYFS

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