Bus driver disciplined after Muslim mum asked to remove veil

A bus driver has been disciplined after asking a young Muslim mother to remove her face veil.

Friday, 10th August 2018, 3:31 pm
Updated Monday, 13th August 2018, 11:37 am
Bus driver disciplined after Muslim mum asked to remove veil

The 20-year-old woman was with her two-month-old baby when the incident happened on a service operated by First in Bristol.

She was wearing a niqab - a veil for the face leaving the eyes visible - when she bought a ticket from the driver.

The woman, who has not been identified, said he responded by asking her to remove her veil.

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She told the Bristol Post: "He said he couldn't see my face, and that he didn't know what I was 'capable of doing'.

"He said I was scary and I was dangerous, and he kept talking about it during the journey. I didn't say anything.

"He continued to insult me, and he made me out to be a terrorist, and kept saying everyone should see each other's faces. He asked why I was wearing a balaclava."

She added: "He was insinuating I was going to bomb the bus."

Mobile phone footage filmed after the woman had left the bus shows other passengers confronting the driver over the incident, which took place on July 1.

A female passenger told him: "It's her choice what she wears."

The driver replied: "I care because this world is dangerous. If you don't see somebody's face, that's not good."

A First West of England spokesman said: "We have fully and unreservedly apologised to the customer for the distress caused when one of our drivers expressed his personal opinions and behaved in an offensive fashion that in no way reflects our deeply held values as an inclusive company which welcomes all people, irrespective of background, race, nationality or religion as customers and employees.

"We have reminded staff of our expectations and behaviours that are demanded of them.

"The driver has been censured through the company's disciplinary procedures for this incident, which is a matter the company takes very seriously.

"We are also helping the police with their inquiries and we are arranging a meeting with the customer to apologise in person and discuss matters in more detail."