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Uber Driver Sacked After Homophobic Rant At Lesbian Couple

The Melbourne couple was subjected to a tirade of shocking abuse.

06/06/2016 3:48 PM AEST | Updated 15/07/2016 12:53 PM AEST
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Robert Galbraith / Reuters
An Uber driver has been dismissed after abusing a gay couple.

An Uber driver has been fired after allegedly subjecting a lesbian couple to a torrent of homophobic abuse in Melbourne on the weekend.

Lucy Thomas and her girlfriend told the Star Observer they were verbally slandered and physically threatened by the Uber driver during a ride home after talking about AFL.

Thomas said the driver became abusive when he realised they were a couple and then started slinging the abuse at them, including calling the pair "faggots".

Warning: The audio content below contains confronting language.

"The driver said he hated football because it was a bunch of 'faggots' jumping around and touching each other," Thomas told the Star Observer.

"I told him that I understood the spirit of what he was saying but that the word was deeply offensive to me and a lot of other people."

Thomas recorded much of the nasty exchange with the driver on her smartphone.

In the recording, the driver challenges the couple for objecting to his use of certain words.

"I can do anything I want if I am prepared to suffer the consequences," hesays at one point.

"What, are you going to give me a one [star] rating and make a complaint [to Uber], and when I write my report about two faggots who don't like being called faggots, then what are they going to say?"

After the trip Thomas made a formal complaint to Uber and reported the incident to police.

Thomas -- who is CEO of anti-abuse not-for-profit Project Rockit -- tweeted on Monday that Uber had sacked the driver.

Uber Australia confirmed to Mashable Australia that the driver in question had been fired.

"As soon as we were made aware of this incident, we removed the driver from the platform," an Uber spokesperson told the website.

The ride sharing service told Fairfax Media that its policies prohibited discrimination against riders or drivers including on the basis of "sexual orientation, sex, marital status, gender identity, age or any other characteristic protected under applicable federal or state law".

"Any rider or driver found to have violated this prohibition will lose access to the Uber platform," it said.

The Huffington Post Australia has sought Uber for further comment.

Note: The Huffington Post's Editor-in-Chief Arianna Huffington is a member of Uber's board of directors, and has recused herself from any involvement in the site's coverage of the company.

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