A woman quit her job at Platinum Fitness after becoming aware of a conversation between her manager and the gym’s CEO where they allegedly called her “unclean” for dating black men.
Alyssa Okada worked as a personal trainer at the gym’s College Park location in Fort Myers, Fla. And although she’s been working there and building up a client roster for some time, she was just recently shown a conversation that took place before she was hired.
The 24-year-old took to her Facebook on June 14 to share a screenshot of the resurfaced conversation, where the men had been discussing her qualifications for the position. However, when one said, “Tell me she’s qualified,” another replied, “She is, but she dates black guys.”
Okada, who is dating New England Patriots player Obi Melifonwu, wrote that it was her boss and “the owner of this massive company,” who had responded to the comment by writing “unclean.” Ultimately, the racist remark is what drove her to leave the job.
“This was said about me before I was hired, but I only recently found out. I was and still am extremely qualified for the position BUT my flaw was who I am dating,” she explained in the Facebook post. “I understand that this is something that I unfortunately have to deal with a lot in my life, but I will not stand for it to be from the person who signs my paychecks.”
Okada shared that she had been “struggling” to articulate her reason for leaving, especially since she did so without informing her clients, but she could no longer “stay quiet about something that has not only hurt me to the core but hurts millions every single day.” In an Instagram story posted on Thursday and obtained by the Daily Mail, she urged people who aren’t directly affected by racism to confront it.
“If someone says something that’s flat out f*****g wrong, stop making excuses for them,” she told her Instagram followers.
Still, she received plenty of support on her Facebook page from friends and clients. She even had some say that they canceled their memberships as a result of the incident.
“I appreciate you speaking up and telling it like it is. You’re [sic] are correct it’s not a mistake it’s their character and they got caught,” one person wrote. Another said, “So unbelievably saddened and disappointed by this information. Just emailed my cancellation letter.”
Platinum Fitness didn’t respond to Yahoo Lifestyle’s request for comment, neither did Okada or Melifonwu.
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