Brooklyn, NY – Yet another Chasidic Williamsburg resident found themselves the subject of harassment in connection with the ongoing measles outbreak, as an Uber driver reportedly made an obscenity laden measles-related remark to a 23 year old female passenger on Thursday.
The woman and her husband, who chose to be identified only by their last name, Krausz, and declined to share their first names publicly, said that the incident took just before 5:30.
Mrs. Krausz was going to pick her son up at a relative’s house and asked her husband to call an Uber for her since she does not have a smartphone. Mr. Krausz used one of his two phones to arrange an Uber, giving the driver a pickup location of Kent Avenue and Wallabout Street.
As she waited for the driver to arrive, Mrs. Krausz called her husband on one phone, while he contacted the driver on his other phone. The Krauszes reported that as Mrs. Krausz got into the car, the driver said “You are of those [obscenity] measles people.”
“At first, when I heard the statement, I wasn’t sure who he was talking to,” Mrs. Krausz told VIN News.
Still on the phone with his wife when the remark was made, Mr. Krasuz stayed on the call until his wife arrived at her destination, concerned for her safety. While the driver, identified on the Uber app as Anthony, made no more negative comments during the ride, Mrs. Krausz said that the half mile trip took nearly twice as long as usual, and that it seemed as if the driver was deliberately slowing down to miss every light.
Mr. Krausz reached out to Yossi Gestetner of OJPAC who took out a billboard this week in Times Square to raise awareness about the high vaccination rate in the Chasidic community, as previously reported on VIN News (http://bit.ly/2VJr7Ak). Gestetner shared the story on Twitter, tagging Uber in his tweet, drawing responses from the company and the TLC, who have launched investigations into the incident.
Both the Krauszes and their children are vaccinated.
Despite its disturbing nature, Mrs. Krausz did her best to put a positive spin on yesterday’s events.
“Maybe the driver was having a hard day,” said Mrs. Krausz. “And there is a lot of misinformation out there about Chasidim and vaccinations.
Mayor Bill de Blasio took a firmer stand on the matter tweeting last night, “Don’t ever accept bigotry like this. You have your rights and your city has your back. Thank you to @NYCTaxi for your swift action in investigating this incident. Anti-Semitism has no home in this town.”