At least one New York City taxi driver might think twice before refusing to pick up passengers. Last week, a city judge ordered that yellow cab driver Baqir Raza must pay a fine of $25,000 for discriminating against a black family.
When Cynthia Jordan and her two daughters attempted to enter his cab in October 2013, he locked his doors, switched off the on-duty light, and told her he was going off duty to use the bathroom. Then he rolled forward 25 feet and picked up two white passengers.
Jordan filed a complaint with the city’s Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC) and the Commission on Human Rights (CHR). Judge Raymond Kramer ruled that Raza must pay a $15,000 civil fine for his actions, plus $10,000 in compensation to Jordan. The CHR must approve the penalty amount. Raza previously paid a $200 TLC fine after pleading guilty to a violation for refusing Jordan service.
“I’m always out with my young daughter trying to grab a cab. There is nothing threatening about us and you should see how many people drive right past us,” Jordan told DNAinfo New York. “I’m happy for the judgment. Hopefully, someone will hear about this, and it will affect the way taxi drivers pick up fares in New York.”