A transgender woman, asking to be identified as Carlotta Sklodowska, has stepped forward and claimed to be the person whose presence in the women's locker room at a Midland, Michigan Planet Fitness got one female's membership revoked for reporting seeing a man while she was getting changed.
The controversy began when Yvette Cormier complained to the gym's front desk after seeing "a man" in the woman's locker room. Cormier was told that he had a right to be in there because he identified as a woman. Cormier then took her complaint to the corporate offices of Planet Fitness. When she returned and began warning other women at the gym, her membership was terminated for violating the company's "Judgment Free Zone" policy.
As it turns out, the transgender woman is not even a member of the club. "I was there as a guest of one of my friends," Sklodowska told MLive.com, claiming to use the locker room only to hang up a coat and purse and to retrieve them afterward.
Sklodowska inquired about being allowed to use the women's facilities prior to entering. An employee said, "You use the locker room that corresponds with how you are dressed."
Cormier had said that the person she saw "did not look like a woman." Sklodowska, who was adorned in "leggings and a baggy t-shirt," agreed that his body structure is masculine and stated, "It's obvious, even from the back."
Sklodowska admits to frequently using public bathrooms around the city and until now, has not encountered any complaints. As for being the transgender person Cormier saw, Sklodowska said, "As far as I can tell, I am the only one in Midland."
Hoping to ease Cormier's concerns over safety, Sklodowska assured the intent is not to harm anyone.
But a Midland lawyer disagrees.
State Rep. Gary Glenn (R-Larkin Township) told MLive.com, "Planet Fitness obviously should rethink its anti-woman, anti-reality policy. If they don't, they shouldn't be surprised in a conservative family-friendly community such as Midland if they lose more female members."
Glenn said Planet Fitness needs to give its female members notice in advance as to the presence of transgender members using the locker rooms, because not doing so "violates the privacy, comfort and peace of mind of women."