No suspension for bus driver over pink tie

Oct. 21, 2009 at 11:59 AM

SPRINGFIELD, Ill., Oct. 21 (UPI) -- A mass transit official in Springfield, Ill., said a one-day suspension was rescinded for a bus driver who wore a pink tie to support breast cancer awareness.

Springfield Mass Transit District managing director Linda Tisdale confirmed she rescinded William "Bill" Jones's suspension for the pink tie the 46-year-old bus driver donned in honor of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, the Springfield (Ill.) State Journal-Register said Wednesday.

"Unfortunately, my decision has left the mistaken impression that the SMTD and I do not support the Breast Cancer Awareness Campaign and, even more regrettably, has hurt and insulted the many families who have had to deal with this horrible disease," Tisdale wrote in a letter to the State Journal-Register.

The Springfield department came under fire after suspending Jones, who wore the tie on the first Friday of the month as part of a "Real Men Wear Pink" campaign intended to urge women to undergo annual mammograms.

Tisdale told the State Journal-Register she regretted her initial decision, saying it was based on department policy.

"I, too, have lost family and friends to cancer, and I understand the suffering and hardship breast cancer inflicts upon its victims and their families," she said.

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