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Ohio Woman Denied Refund After Being Told that She Was Too Fat to Tan

Update Date: Apr 23, 2013 09:48 AM EDT
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A woman in northeastern Ohio was told that she was too fat to tan by a local tanning company.

According to WKYC, Kelly McGrevey took a tour of a tanning salon called Aloha Tanning. Following the experience, she purchased a month-long tanning package for $70 and tanned in one of the stand-up booths.

However, the next day, when she returned to the establishment to continue to take advantage of her subscription, she was informed that the stand-up booth was broken. An employee told her that they had a new policy. Anyone over the weight of 230 pounds was not able to tan in the traditional tanning beds.

Tanning beds have light bulbs which are covered in acrylic. Justin Hileman, the owner of Aloha Tanning, asked her if she knew how often he needed to replace the acrylic after heavyset people had used them.

An employee named Nicole said that the policy had been in place for a while, but that there was no written statement for customers. She said that was simply discussed with clients.

Ms. McGrevey asked for written evidence of the policy. When that was not able to be furnished for her, she asked for a refund, since she had paid for a service that she had not received. That was refused as well.

Nicole said that only a manager, a man who she called Gus, could complete a refund. When Ohio's Channel 3 called the business asking about it, the man on the phone said that Aloha Tanning had no intent of giving Ms. McGrevey a refund. He said that she could dispute the charge with her credit card company if she wanted.

In response, McGrevey called the police and filed a report against Aloha Tanning and Mr. Hileman. She called the policy discrimination.

Indeed, according to Health Day, a study found that many heavyset people have felt that they are the victims of discrimination. In a study conducted among obese and morbidly obese people, 52 percent of people feel that they have been discriminated against when applying for a job or for a promotion, 40 percent said that they had been discriminated against in social situations and 36 percent reported that they had been discriminated against for seating in restaurants and theaters.

Tanning in sunbeds has been linked to forms of skin cancer.

The Better Business Bureau has given the business an F. Yelp, the business rating site, awards the company with 1 star out of 5.

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