Premier Fitness fined under Employment Standards Act
About this time last year Marketplace kicked off our season with the Big Gym Ripoff, our investigation into the sneaky charges and over-billing that seemed to plague the industry for years. We wanted to know just how bad it was and which gym was the worst offender, so we asked you to tell us. Well, you contacted us in droves to share your personal gym rip-off experiences and Premier Fitness came out clearly ahead.
As part of our investigation, we also spoke with a number of former and present employees of Premier Fitness who told us they were concerned with how the company treated their customers. Many also wanted us to know about the issues they faced as employees of this big chain. Among the stories we heard most: employees not being paid on time or as much as they expected. Some even told us they took these issues all the way to the Ontario Labour Board.
Well it seems like the Board heard them loud and clear. Today, the Ontario Ministry of Labour announced that Premier Fitness was fined $100,000 for violation of the Employment Standards Act, specifically on the issue of wages. The director of the company, Neil Proctor, who we interviewed last year for our story, was also personally fined $30,000 after pleading guilty to failing to promptly pay 38 employees. You can find full information on the charges from the Ministry here.
Early this month, Marketplace also learned that Premier Fitness is changing hands. The Hamilton Spectator reported founder John Cardillo is selling Premier Fitness to Toronto chiropractor Scott Wilson. The fitness facilities will now be branded Physiomed Fitness.
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