(LOS ANGELES, CA - 7/11/2019) – The Greater Los Angeles Area office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-LA) announced today it is representing an Uber driver who was fired in January after being harassed by passengers who allegedly used anti-Muslim slurs.
SEE: CAIR-LA Calls for Reinstatement of Uber Driver Targeted by Anti-Muslim Slurs
Boutheina Elouaer, 35, claims she was fired by Uber after reporting an incident with two passengers who became agitated during a 90-minute trip from Los Angeles International Airport to downtown Los Angeles during rush hour. The passengers reportedly began to verbally attack Elouaer after she declined to take them to a restaurant.
CAIR-LA Civil Rights Attorney Patricia Shnell is representing Elouaer today at an interview with the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) to address Elouaer’s suspension by Uber.
"Sadly, Ms. Elouaer is the victim of multiple types of discrimination. Not only was she subjected to hate speech and threats by the passengers, but Uber’s decision to terminate her as a result of this discrimination amounts to wrongful termination,” Shnell said. “It is our hope that, through pursuing this case, we induce Uber to support its drivers of diverse religious, ethnic, national, and other backgrounds.”
In an interview with KABC/7 on Feb. 18, Elouaer said the passengers became irate and used anti-Muslim, anti-immigrant, and racial slurs.
“I was scared. I was terrified in my own car,” she told a reporter. “I was trying to do my work.”
Elouaer said her passengers then began smoking marijuana and when she asked them to stop, they became angrier and began to physically intimidate her as she attempted to drive.
One of the passengers was recorded on video calling Elouaer a “expletive Muslim” as she exited the vehicle. When Elouaer contacted Uber support, she said she received a message that she was being placed on suspension and was removed from the app.
WATCH: Orange County Uber driver says passengers used anti-Muslim slurs during ride from LAX
CAIR-LA is Southern California’s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance understanding of Islam, protect civil rights, promote justice and empower American Muslims.
CONTACT: CAIR-LA Communications Manager Eugene W. Fields, 714-851-4851 or firstname.lastname@example.org