ED Magedson – Founder
24 Hour Fitness Sugarhouse Utah1121 East Ashton Ave Salt Lake City, Utah United States of America
I have a two-year paid membership with 24 hour fitness and got some coupons in the mail to bring guests to their facility. The coupons said "Free 7-day pass". I took my sister to the gym with me and gave her one of the passes I got in the mail. At the club entrance I handed my membership sans ID, as usual, and my sister handed her pass. The girl at the front desk gave us an attitude and asked my sister for ID. She told my sister "we need proof that you are in this country legally". I looked at her in disbelief and blurted out "What does that have to do with working out?!" to what she replied that she was just doing her job and denied us entrance. I told her that I highly doubted that if we were blonde and blue-eyed that she would be asking if we were legal and told he she is a racist. She then said she would call the manager.
When the manager arrived he listened to her twisted version of the story, and also gave us an condescending attitude while he insisted that her employee was not a racist, looking at us like we were the problem. I told him the same thing I told her, that if we were blonde and blue-eyed our migratory status wouldn't be in question at a gym. I explained to him that I had gotten two "Free 7-day Pass" coupons in the mail, and that I had given my blonde, blue-eyed ex one of them, and that when he used it no ID was asked of him. He was let in without any questions or issues. The receptionist barely looked up at him and at the coupon when he used it. I explained that the difference in treatment was evident, and re-affirmed that therefore his employee was a racist. He gave us some excuse that he had recently changed the policy and told his employees to start asking for IDs.
I replied that she didn't just ask for ID, that she asked for proof that my sister "was in the country legally" and that I deemed the question a racist one, because it obviously emanated from the way the way we look. He said he knew his employee well and that she's not a racist "because she has a couple of polynesian friends" and because she was so nice despite being "the minority here, she is not LDS [meaning mormon]". Neither my sister nor I are mormon either, but I decided to focus on the issue of race and not religion, so I said nothing in regards to our religious beliefs. I told him that just because his employee said hi to a couple of brown people didn't mean she wasn't a racist, and that I highly doubt that in this era of political correctness anyone in a metropolitan area could get away with being openly racist, I mean, we have a black president!
I explained that being racist means that you judge people based on their appereance and the color of their skin, and that just because we are latinas doesn't mean that we are illegals, and that she had obviously made that association in her head, because otherwise she would have asked for proof of being "in the country legally. I mean seriously, who asks that except inmmigration? How is that relevant for admittance to a gym? The conversation went on and at some point, the manager, Cameron Crawford, lost his cool despite of my composure and yelled "I want you to leave". I thought to myself, "We are not only being discriminated against, but also being verbally abused and kicked out because we complained?!". I kept my cool, continued making my point, and didn't leave. He finally said "we all say things we don't mean, she didn't mean to be racist and she's sorry". Then he said he was busy and blew us off. We left.
My sister and I decided to go to a different 24 Hour Fitness (Trolley Square, UT). We were let in without a problem. My sister was able to get in with the coupon that I got in the mail. No ID, no legal status questions. The issue at the other venue was obviously not company policy. It was a blatent example of racism and discrimination. For the record, though it is irrelevant to the issue, I am an American Citizen and my sister is in the country legally.
I still can't believe I pay for a facility who employs people who treat others like this. I don't think they should keep getting away with it. There should be consequences.
This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 12/06/2009 06:15 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/24-Hour-Fitness-Sugarhouse-Utah/Salt-Lake-City-Utah-84106/24-Hour-Fitness-Sugarhouse-Utah-Denied-entrance-Asked-for-proof-of-immigration-status-ba-534889. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.
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