Minnesota’s Muslim cab drivers face crackdown

The Metropolitan Airports Commission voted unanimously to impose the new penalties beginning in May on Muslim cab drivers who refuse to give rides to travelers carrying alcohol or accompanied by dogs. Under the new regulations a first offense would result in a 30-day cab license suspension and a second in a two-year taxi license revocation. The current penalty only requires that cab drivers who refuse a fare to go back to the end of the taxi queue, costing them time and money.

Minneapolis airport cabbies who refuse fares face tough penalties

Muslim cabdrivers at Minnesota’s biggest airport will face new penalties, including a two-year revocation of their taxi permits, if they refuse to give rides to travelers carrying liquor or accompanied by dogs, the board overseeing operations ruled Monday. The Metropolitan Airports Commission, which was responding to complaints about the liquor issue, voted unanimously to impose the penalties, which take effect in May. A large number of taxi drivers in the area of the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport are Muslim Somali immigrants. Many say they believe that the faith’s ban on alcohol consumption includes transporting anyone who carries it. Some also have refused to transport dogs, both pets and guide dogs, saying that they are unclean. The rules cover any driver who refuses a ride for unwarranted reasons. Under the new regulations, a first offense would result in a 30-day cab license suspension. A second offense would mean a two-year taxi license revocation. The current penalty requires only that drivers who refuse a fare go to the end of the taxi queue, which costs them time and money.