LA Fitness has apologized after two black men claimed they were racially profiled at a New Jersey gym this week. One of the men posted their experience on Facebook, and now the fitness club has promised to improve staff training.
So what exactly happened? Tshyrad Oates said he was exercising at a Secaucus, New Jersey gym with his friend, who is a LA Fitness member. Oates had a guest pass but the front desk employee thought both of the men were guests of the club. Oates tried to explain that his workout partner was a member, but the employee refused to retrieve his membership card to double check because she was off the clock. Instead, she called the police.
“She stated that it was my friend who did not pay (unaware that her manager had already signed him in with his membership pass). My friend stated to her that he is an active and current member and that his gym tag was in his locker,” Oates wrote on Facebook. “He felt racially profiled and embarrassed by the harassment of this LA Fitness employee in front of other members at the gym.”
In response, LA Fitness apologized and said the company is “currently exploring potential training content and opportunities to better train our staff.”
“Regrettably, from there our staff unnecessarily escalated the situation and called the police rather than work through it,” LA Fitness said. “Clearly, this is a long time member, with a current, valid membership. We want to clarify that no membership was canceled and no one, including the member’s guest, was banned from the club.”
Three employees from the gym have been fired. Thoughts, Roommates?