TLC's new PSA warns taxi drivers not to refuse to pick up passengers

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Shirlee Allicot reports from Greenwich Village, where there's a new PSA warning taxi drivers not to refuse to pick up passengers. (WABC)

There's a warning to taxi drivers in New York City, if you refuse to pick up passengers or take them where they want it's going to cost you.

The TLC's newest public service announcement is reminding drivers they must pick you up no matter your race, ethnicity, or disability, and no matter which borough you are headed to.

"Getting to an airport may be a little difficult if you are leaving at the time when the shifts are changing and they might not want to go out there," said one woman.

"I've lived in New York for many, many years and it's happened I don't know how many times," said Rick Lee, of Brooklyn.

TLC Commissioner Meera Joshi says the only way to stop it is by reporting it. That's exactly what happened two weeks ago when the Mayor of San Juan hailed a taxi and was literally shown the door when she said she was headed to the South Bronx.

"Because she took down exactly the information that we needed to investigate, we were able to identify the driver and have begun prosecuting him," Joshi said.

But this is not a campaign against all taxi drivers.

"Well I work in all five boroughs, and I have to obey the law," said Moses Abraham, a cab driver.

"Most drivers are great ambassadors for the city, but even when this happens once it's one too many times," Joshi said.

For Brandi Hudson who has been refused quite a few times trying to head home to Jersey City, this is PSA came at the right time.

"Love it, so it's that simple? Just 311 and you can complain? I love it," Hudson said.

Related Topics:
trafficTLCtaxitaxi driverscab driversNew York City
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