KELOWNA, B.C. – B.C. Transit is investigating after a woman and her toddler child were kicked off a bus Wednesday night in downtown Kelowna.
Jessica van Gemert says the driver was upset because her tired and grumpy two-year-old daughter was crying.
“He just stopped the bus and got off his seat and I couldn’t really hear what he said before that but he just told me to get off,” says van Gemert. “I just couldn’t believe it happened.”
“I didn’t really want to argue with him. It was already embarrassing enough that my kid is kind of having a tantrum and then to be kicked off the bus was just really embarrassing.”
Bus passenger Mundia Ingram says she and other riders were outraged with the driver’s actions.
“Especially because it was dark, it was late and it was cold,” says Ingram. “It was actually windy and she has this baby that’s already crying and that’s just not a good situation.”
B.C. Transit says at least two other complaints were filed about the incident.
“We are investigating what actually occurred and making sure we get to the bottom of it,” says spokesperson Mike Russell. “What she described is very inappropriate and shouldn’t be happening.”
This past summer, Global Okanagan News brought similar complaints to B.C. Transit from other mothers with young children about bus driver behaviour in Kelowna.
“We are definitely hearing feedback from the community in terms of service provision, certainly from a large group of mothers out there, who are feeling that the service is not up to par. So it’s certainly something we are looking at,” says Russell.
Van Gemert phoned her mother-in-law to get a ride home to West Kelowna.