KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) – A local scientist claims to have faced racial discrimination at a Knoxville gym.
Dr. Vinit Sharma says it happened at Fort Sanders Health and Fitness Center on Wednesday.
He’s claiming that when he put his belongings on a bench, someone immediately threw them on the floor.
Dr. Sharma says when he asked why that person then cursed and used racially-insensitive language towards him.
His account detailed in a change.org petition, that has over 6,000 signatures.
WATE 6 On Your Side reached out to Fort Sanders Health and Fitness Center for comment and this was their response:
“Fort Sanders Health and Fitness Center strives to provide a safe, inclusive and positive environment for those who use our facilities and services, and we work to maintain a welcoming space for all patrons and guests.
Fort Sanders Health and Fitness Center does not tolerate racist, hateful, abusive or threatening language or behavior, or threats of physical violence. We take very seriously any allegations or reports of behaviors that do not follow this policy. We have launched an internal inquiry regarding the report of a recent incident involving two members at our facility.
Fort Sanders Health and Fitness Center complies with applicable Federal civil rights laws and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, disability or sex. Fort Sanders Health and Fitness Center does not exclude people or treat them differently because of race, color, national origin, age, disability or sex. If any member or guest believes they have experienced discrimination or has felt unsafe in our facility, we ask them to report it so that we can investigate their concerns.”
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