An Auckland bus passenger is accusing Auckland Transport of discrimination after being refused entry on the bus by the same driver on several occasions.
Bomi Kim, a pregnant mother-of-two living in West Auckland, says the same driver has refused her entry on the bus several times over the past month.
She says the first time, the driver complained about her taking the bus with a baby in a stroller.
"I protested to the bus company a month ago that the bus driver acted coercively against taking the bus in a stroller. After that, the same bus driver will not let me take the bus. I am waiting for the answer from the bus company, but the bus driver still does not give me a ride," she told the Herald.
Kim says she can not drive and the bus is her only means of transportation.
"I had to go to the hospital because of my child, but the bus driver is preventing me from using the bus," she says, adding that she's been forced to cancel hospital appointments because of the situation.
Kim, who filmed a two-minute video on her phone showing the bus driver stopped at the bus stop but refusing to open the door for her, says she believes she is the victim of racial discrimination.
"If I were a good white English speaker, would the bus driver sit in the driver's seat and open the door, and see me and mock me?"
The video was taken last week at Fernhill Drive, in Westgate, Auckland.
Following the video, Mrs Kim said she tried taking the bus in the afternoon from West Harbour and had the "same problem with the same bus driver".
The mother-of-two believes the refusal to let her on the bus is the result of an initial incident on February 24, when she got on the bus with her child in a stroller.
"As always, I sat on the right side because the right hand side is seating reserved for strollers. But the driver told me to move to the left side seats. I told the bus driver 'the right seat is more secure for the baby. Can I sit on the right side?'. But the bus driver told me: 'I am the driver of this bus' and if I didn't move left to 'get off the bus right now'," she recalls.
The bus driver told me to get off the bus immediately if I would not follow his words. I said again to bus driver 'the left side seat is more dangerous for the baby because it would shake a lot, it's more dangerous even if I lock the stroller wheels. But the driver scared me and said calling the police if I did not move the seat."
Kim says she did not understand the bus driver's reaction, which left her children "terrified".
"The other passengers in the bus helped me and cared for my child. Eventually I was forced to sit alone with my child by the coercion of the bus driver to the bus destination. My child was trembled in the stroller on the left side of the bus alone without mother's hold. I can not believe it," she added.
Kim, an Asian migrant living in New Zealand, says she witnessed the same bus driver "ignore teenage Asian students".
"I think it's like the personality of the bus driver. New Zealand is a country of immigrants, and I will not pass on this fact that there are still white people with white supremacy.
"The bus driver did not ignore the other passengers," the passenger said. "She is very coercive and rude to Asian guests."
The West Auckland mother believes she is the victim of "serious racial discrimination" and has lodged a complaint with Auckland Transport.
Contacted by the Herald, Auckland Transport says the issue has been raised with the bus operator, Pavlovich Transport Solutions, and the driver in question is being investigated by the company.
"If anyone has an unsatisfactory experience on a bus, they should record the bus number, route number and the time, and call us so that we can sort it out," Auckland Transport's media adviser James Ireland added.