A manager and two employees at a L.A. Fitness in New Jersey have been fired after a video posted online shows them calling police on two Black men, according to the NY Daily News.
Tshyrad Oates who posted the video to his Facebook says he was working out at the gym on a four-day guest pass on his friend’s membership.
“After about a half hour I was approached by this same employee telling me that I had to leave or pay and I explained to her that I just signed in with her with the guest pass,” wrote Oates in his Facebook post.
She explained that his friend did not pay even though a manager signed him in on 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,” wrote Oates. “He felt racially profiled and embarrassed by the harassment of this LA Fitness employee in front of other members at the gym.”
Soon after two officers showed up to question them. Oates told cops that his friend was indeed a member.
“We explained to them about our guest pass and re-scanned my friend’s member tag and it resulted in current active statues. (The LA Fitness employee did look at the computer screen that showed current member status and said nothing),” continued Oates in his post.
The two returned to working out until the manager came 10 minutes later asking them to leave even though they did nothing wrong and his friend’s membership was active. Shortly following that, 5 officers showed up asking them to leave.
Allegedly, the gym manager told Oates that he was banned from the gym and that his friend’s membership got canceled. In another video, Oates explained that his friend noticed that they were the only two Black men in the gym and experienced problems with the staff for months.
In an interview with NJ.com, a gym employee said that the manager and two employees involved in the incident were fired.
In a statement to NJ.com the gym said, “Regrettably, our staff unnecessarily escalated the situation and called the police rather than work through it. Clearly, this is a long time member with a current, valid membership.” It continues, “We want to clarify that no membership was canceled and no one, including the member’s guest, was banned from the club. We have spoken to the member to apologize and assured him that he and his guests are welcome in our clubs at all times.”
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(Source: NY Daily News )
(Photo Credit: ThinkStock Images)