GoodLife Fitness reveals new vaccine policy for reopening and members are not happy
A rash of businesses in Ontario are finally getting ready to open their doors to the public once more this Friday as the province enters Step 3 of its return to normal following months of pandemic lockdown, and with the resumption of operations comes new health and safety protocols.
Though many of these are mandated by the province and the City of Toronto, there are some things that are still up to companies themselves — such as whether they limit customers to only those who can provide proof of vaccination.
Strip clubs (such as Filmores Hotel), dance studios (such as Toronto Dance Salsa), and other establishments have come out to say that despite the fact that the province does not have any plans for a vaccination passport of any sort just yet, they will be running on a no vaccine, no service basis to ensure the safety of patrons and staff.
Then there are the businesses that have vowed to do the opposite, such as GoodLife Fitness, which tweeted on Monday that they will not be having any sort of vaccine policy when they reopen this week.
"At this time, we are not planning to require associates or members to be vaccinated to enter our locations. For privacy reasons, GoodLife will not disclose information regarding any individual Associate's vaccination status," the brand said in a reply to a user question.
Unfortunately, the tweet did not go over well with the vast majority of people.
So long guys, it's been a slice. You don't mind the steroids and the supplements, but vaccines recommended by medical professionals is where you draw the line? I'll be cancelling my membership immediately.— Timberking (@Timberking5) July 14, 2021
"Thanks for reminding me why I cancelled my membership" and "GoodLife: your chance to be in a room with a bunch of loudly exhaling unvaccinated people!" were among the hundreds of responses to the statement, which most people found to be a surprising revelation given the high contact, sweaty nature of gym settings.
"I just can't imagine how we get back to these indoor settings being a reasonable place to be without vaccines," one person replied.
"I know it's a tough call and you may upset some members, but protecting all members should be a priority."
@GoodLifeFitness , you do understand that if cases rise again, gyms will be one of the first businesses that will have to close? Please reconsider your rules on vaccination/masking— Sandy (@_sandycee) July 14, 2021
The concept of vaccine passports and policies for certain activities is indeed an extremely contentious issue that we will continue to face as we reopen further.
Some provinces are already sending QR codes, which will be used for entry too certain businesses in situations where there are outbreaks or case numbers rise, to residents with their vaccination confirmation.
GoodLife in particular has faced backlash not only due to this new vaccine stance, but also for allegedly not following COVID-19 safety protocols in earlier iterations of lockdown, for sending emails to members encouraging them to get politically active on the gym's behalf, and for aspects of their new reopening plan.
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