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Bus driver ‘sacked’ after refusing to drive new rainbow bus

Nick Duffy September 12, 2015

A bus driver who claimed it was against his religion to drive a rainbow bus says he has been sacked.

The city of Calgary, Alberta introduced a new rainbow-coloured bus last month to celebrate the city’s Pride parade – seemingly drawing inspiration from Transport for London, who have introduced a rainbow bus, rainbow taxi and rainbow train over the past year.

The bus rotated through different routes in Calgary in the build-up to the city’s Pride parade.

However, one bus driver claimed it would be against his religion to drive the ‘gay’ vehicle, and outright refused to do so.

Jesse Rau claimed that driving the bus would be promoting a lifestyle he “can’t condone” – though we’re not totally clear if he thinks every bus driver in the world has to personally endorse everything that appears on every bus they drive.

The Calgary Transit worker, who claims to be a Christian, said at the time: “I’m concerned that if I say that this bus is against my beliefs that I might not have a job.

“I’m a Christian so, as a Christian, there are things like homosexuality that I just can’t condone. Unfortunately, we live in a culture where if you disagree with someone’s lifestyle, the accusation is that you hate the person.”

He claimed he had been “put in a corner” by being asked to just do his job, which does not usually include anything to do with the bus design.

However, after weeks in which he refused to back down, Rau says he has been sacked by Calgary Transit.

At a press conference he claimed he was dismissed for “standing for [his] Christian faith., adding: “It’s something that I 100 per cent expected.

“I expected that my job was totally on the line. The fact that they fired me, it’s hurtful, but … I knew that was on the table.”

Rau claims he is just a normal Christian being ‘persecuted’ for his beliefs, but his story was rather undermined by the presence of radical anti-gay preacher Artur Pawlowski, who spoke alongside him at the press conference.

Pawlowski regularly espouses overtly anti-gay views, claiming that homosexuals are “provoking the wrath of God.”

He has also claimed previously that God caused flooding that hit the region in 2013, because he was angry about the “perversion” of homosexuality.

Calgary Transit says it is unable to comment on a private personnel matter.

More: Americas, bus, Calgary, Canada, driver, fired, LGBT, Pride, rainbow, sacked

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