Randall Magill, 28, and Jose Chavez, 26, said they were on their way home from a holiday party at a friend’s house in Houston at the time of the incident last week. The men, who got engaged in December, told Click 2 Houston that they were seated in two seats divided by an aisle in the driver’s minivan when they leaned in for a quick kiss.
“I wasn’t doing anything that I wouldn’t have done in public. I’m not going to embarrass myself or my fiancé by any means,” Magill told the television station.
At that point, the driver ― who has not been identified in media reports ― asked the men to stop kissing, Chavez said.
“He said, ‘I can’t take you no more.’ He was like, ‘I’m going to have to drop you guys off,’ and we said, ‘That’s fine,’” Chavez said. “I was upset. I’ve never been told not to kiss or anything.”
Although the driver claimed that he’d previously asked a heterosexual couple to stop kissing in his car, too, Chavez and Magill believe they were targeted because they are gay. The men called another Uber driver to take them home after being booted from the car, but they’re not likely to use the service again.
“I’ve never heard of anyone being asked to stop kissing anywhere,” especially when it’s just a “peck on the lips,” Magill said. “I was super disappointed.”
An Uber spokeswoman told HuffPost that the company, which has a clear nondiscrimination policy, was investigating the incident.
“This is very concerning to us and we take these types of reports seriously,” the spokeswoman said. The company, she added, will take “appropriate action” once the investigation is completed.
In 2016, the company fired an Australian driver who was caught on tape using homophobic and threatening language toward a same-sex couple.