The Postmates driver who was left unemployed by his taxi company after it was accused of sexual harassment after he complained about his sexual orientation has told of the “horrific” experience.
In a new book, Driver: How to Find a Job and Change Your Life, Mr David Levene recounted his experience of being sacked by Postmates, his employer, after complaining about his sexuality in an internal memo sent to employees on June 14, 2016.
He claims he was made to sign an apology before being told that he could not be promoted to a higher position, but the company has since reversed its decision.
Mr Levenes says he was left with “no other option”.
“I went from being a valued member of the community to a second-class employee,” he told New Scientist.
“I am not going to lie, I was very angry at the time, because I had not expected that.”
Mr Levines said he did not have a job offer from Postmates when he applied for one, and was offered a job at a different company, but was not offered a higher-level position.
He was told that his sexual identity had caused “a very hostile work environment”.
“We were not even given an opportunity to have an open discussion with each other,” Mr Leves said.
“The company knew this was not acceptable behaviour, and they made it very clear that they did not care about us and that we were to get on with our lives.”
The Postmen are currently appealing against the decision to fire him.
Mr levenes, who is from New Zealand, is now living with his wife and three children in New Zealand.
“They said they wanted me to leave the country, and I was not going anywhere,” he said.
The book has been released in paperback, and is available to download from Amazon.
“We have a lot of sympathy for the victims of sexual abuse and harassment, and we’re not surprised at the way that they have dealt with it,” said the organisation’s general manager of human resources, Michelle Gwynne.
“Postmates’ culture has been deeply rooted in an archaic culture of entitlement and fear, which leaves many people feeling isolated and powerless.”
“The workplace culture that allows sexual harassment and bullying to flourish is deeply problematic for everyone, including employees.”
The organisation said it would also be “incredibly disappointed” if it could not offer support for the driver.
“This is an absolutely unacceptable outcome, and one that Postmates has consistently and repeatedly failed to address,” Ms Gwynn said.
Ms Glynne said Postmates had not been forthcoming about the incident and had “taken a number of steps” to improve its workplace.
“It’s time for Postmates to address this issue head on and make it better,” she said.
“We recognise that Postcodes has a long way to go to make sure it continues to be a model for the world.” “
In response to the allegations, we have worked to identify ways to better support our drivers, as well as create a culture that promotes equality and mutual respect.”
“We recognise that Postcodes has a long way to go to make sure it continues to be a model for the world.”
Postcodes said it had also changed its employee handbook to reflect its approach to sexual harassment, which was “designed with both employees and colleagues in mind”.
“Our culture is one where everyone is treated with respect, as a human being, not a ‘job-seeking’ target,” it said.
Mr Gwynnes said she believed Postcodes had been “quite clear about what it means to be inclusive, and the right thing to do”.
“The culture is really strong, and it’s a real challenge for us, because we have to work with people all over the world,” she told New Zealand’s ABC.