SEYMOUR, Tenn. (WATE) – An East Tennessee woman is making national news after she claims she was asked to leave a pool because of her body type.
Tori Jenkins, a resident of Smoky Crossing Apartments, was at the complex’s pool with her fiancé. The couple claims she was told her swimsuit was inappropriate.
“She basically told me that if I didn’t have kids I wouldn’t understand, if her kids were at the pool she wouldn’t want me in that swim suit, how inappropriate I looked, and then she told me that there were a lot of teenage boys at the complex that I don’t need to be exciting,” said Jenkins.
Jenkins was given the option of either changing her swimsuit, putting on shorts or leaving the pool.
“Tori was accused of wearing a ‘thong bathing suit’ and told there were complaints about the way she dressed after roughly 3 minutes tops of us arriving there,” said her fiancé Tyler Newman in a Facebook post.
The couple went to the leasing office to talk to an employee in private about the situation. Newman says an employee suggested taking photos of Jenkins in order for her to understand why some people would not want their children around her.
“She was told that her body because it’s built more curvy than others, is ‘too inappropriate’ for children to be around,” said Newman. “She was told ‘there are a lot of teenage boys in this complex, and you don’t need to excite them.'”
Newman believes the situation shows how rape culture continues to grow. He feels the employee was blaming Jenkins for the potential actions of others.
“Today, my fiancée was told that she is less important than how men feel around her,” said Newman. “I think she’s the most beautiful woman in the world, but I also respect her. I would never make her or any other woman feel less than what she’s worth because of her outfit or her looks.”
Jenkins said the entire situation was humiliating.
“It was just really degrading over all,” said Jenkins. “I left crying and just went home.”
The apartment complex released a statement saying “Smoky Crossing is a welcoming family community. Multiple residents within our community complained and expressed concerns regarding Ms. Jenks’ swimwear. In accordance with our pool policies, which are posted near the swimming area, one of our leasing consultants requested Ms. Jenks wrap a towel around herself when she was walking around the pool. Ms. Jenkins was never asked to leave the pool. In addition, our leasing agent did not state that Ms. Jenkins swimwear would ‘excite teenage boys.’ Ms. Jenkins and Mr. Newman are valued members of our community. However, we feel it is inappropriate to equate requesting Ms. Jenkins to cover up with sexual harassment or ‘rape culture.’ Smoky Crossing denounces harassment in all forms.” — Smoky Crossing spokesperson