NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — A female pedicab driver claims that getting cursed at, spit at and kicked at work have become the norm and that a group of fellow drivers are to blame.
Helen David told CBS 2’s Andrea Grymes that her job is her passion, but that driving her pedicab has become increasingly dangerous.
“I’m intimidated when I go in there. I’m scared,” she said.
David, who has been driving since 2005, claims that for the last three years a small group of newer pedicab drivers outside of Central Park has been harassing her on a near daily basis, all because she is the only woman there on the job.
“Black Muslims. They look at me with disgust. Sometimes they spit at me with my customers, they kick my customers, they kick me,” she said.
David told CBS 2’s Grymes that the men have punctured her tires, cursed her out, and hidden marijuana under her seat.
Fellow driver, Zlatan Davitkov, said that the men will do anything to make Davis lose business.
“They’re very dangerous,” he said.
Drivers frequently hang out on foot at the entrance to the park in Columbus Circle in hopes of persuading riders to hop on their pedicabs.
David was there on Sunday, and said that one of the men got in her face.
“One of them just came up to me and kicked me almost in my stomach,” she said.
Davitkov said that he witnessed the incident.
“I was right behind her. Then I went and separated them. I pushed him away. He didn’t bother with me,” he said.
David said that she has called the police and the Department of Consumer Affairs several times, but that nothing has helped.
She told CBS 2’s Grymes that she has gone public with her story in hopes that it will stop the harassment. Either way, she said that she does not plan to quit the job that she loves.
The NPYD confirmed that David did file a harassment report.
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