During a visit to a Planet Fitness Gym on Dec. 4, 2011, a man, Peter Demopoulos of Elmwood Park, IL, harassed me by taking photographs with his camera. According to a sign at the entrance that said 'No Picture Taking', this was not allowed.
The staff said they could not have him leave---even though Planet Fitness members have been escorted out by police for as little as grunting while working out. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PQ6OrO1f610) Even worse, video showed staff had seen Demopoulos taking photos earlier that day, and did not have him removed.
After five phone calls, including one with VP Bill Mulleady, Peter Demopoulos was banned from that location. So no one else went through the same harassment, I requested:
The offender be banned from all Planet Fitness locations within 25 miles of mine
Planet Fitness form a harassment policy and their staff be trained on that policy
The release of the security footage used to aid in their decision to ban the offender. (the authorities said I would need it to bring him to court for misconduct)
Planet Fitness did ban the offender from nearby facilities. But after being told that policy stated photo takers had their memberships revoked immediately, and that I would be sent a copy of their harassment policy on which their employees were 'already trained', and that he would check on the release of the video----there was no further communication.
When I emailed the VP about ignoring my requests, he responded with a very shocking “What evidence do you have that he took a picture of you? " Planet Fitness claimed their video showed 'nothing'---however after three weeks of this ordeal, I believe otherwise.
Planet Fitness Gym advertises itself as a gym that bans intimidating behavior. Instead of ignoring their customers they should be working to make them more comfortable. TELL THEM TO FORM AND HAVE THEIR STAFF TRAINED ON A HARASSMENT POLICY NATIONWIDE AND TO STOP HIDING VIDEO OF THE DEC, 4, 2011 INCIDENT!
It is also my understanding that the guest offended by the harassment contacted you and requested that you take steps in order to protect your members and your guests from similar offenses in the future, and to see the security footage of that day to see if anything could be done regarding the offenders actions---and that you ignored these requests.
I have also been made aware of an additional situation where a woman had her telephone information STOLEN from her gym contract by one of your STAFF and used to harass her until the woman and the husband decided to cancel their new memberships.
Planet Fitness Gym advertises itself as a gym that bans intimidating behavior. Instead of ignoring and demeaning their customers, they should be working to make them more comfortable. Your current and future members and guests deserve to know that they are truly working in a ‘Judgment-Free Zone’ that promotes health, safety, and comfort.
Please create a anti-harassment policy for Planet Fitness and train you staff on that policy and how to handle harassment.