Telile 24/7: Local Couple Brings Gym Discrimination Complaint To Town Officials

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Telile Community Television
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Telile 24/7: Local Couple Brings Gym Discrimination Complaint To Town Officials

PORT HAWKESBURY - A local man, who claims that he is facing discrimination from the owner of a gym facility operating out of the municipally-run Port Hawkesbury Civic Centre, has officially brought his concerns to town officials. 

Jason Doiron, a Licensed Practical Nurse and long-time Tae Kwon Do instructor from Port Hawkesbury, claims that he has been banned from the Body N Soul fitness centre by owner-operator Jens Blecker due to liability concerns regarding Doiron's diagnosis of Multiple Sclerosis.

His wife Leah Doiron had attempted to secure him a gift certificate for Body N Soul to assist with the rehabilitation and treatment process for MS this past October. However, this effort was met with opposition from Blecker, who claims that he must abide by paperwork provided by Jason Doiron's general physician in December 2021 following his initial MS diagnosis. The couple presented the paperwork to Body N Soul after it became clear that the state of Doiron's MS at that time would prevent him from using a one-month pass for the gym and its equipment. 

The Doirons have presented their case to Port Hawkesbury Mayor Brenda Chisholm-Beaton and the town's Facilities Manager, Gordie Snook. While both declined comment for this story, Mayor Chisholm-Beaton has confirmed that the matter is now in the hands of the town's municipal solicitor and that a follow-up statement will be made if such a course of action is deemed appropriate. 

Blecker would not appear on camera for an interview but provided a statement to Telile Community Television, in which he claimed that Jason Doiron had violated a waiver he and his wife had signed for a two-week trial period at Body N Soul for this past January, and added that the death of Blecker's own mother to Multiple Sclerosis gives him a unique perspective on the issue. He also declared that Doiron would be permitted to return to the gym and use its equipment if the town and Doiron's family doctor agree to shoulder the financial liability in the event that Doiron experiences injury as a result of patronizing the fitness centre.

This week's edition of TELILE 24/7 also features an interview with Cape Breton-Canso Member of Parliament Mike Kelloway, whose topics of conversation include the new 10-year healthcare financial package signed by Canada's federal and provincial governments, along with proposed changes to Kelloway's riding that would see it absorb all of rural Cape Breton Island in addition to the counties of Antigonish and Guysborough. 

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Video Upload Date: March 9, 2023

TV TELILE is a unique community television station in Nova Scotia. They are found on Channel 10 using an antenna, Channel 4 on the EastLink cable system in western Richmond County, and on Channel 5 on the Seaside cable system in eastern Richmond County. They are also on the Seaside cable system along Eastern Cape Breton from New Waterford and Glace Bay to Louisbourg and St Peters, and is now on the Bell Satellite system on Channel 536!

TELILE seeks the stories, achievements and scenes of our local neighborhood. We also enjoy joining with other communities in story, music and song.

Whether we are at a high school graduation, a summer festival, concerts, grand openings, municipal council meetings or just showing the beauty of our island, we celebrate our culture.

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Arichat NS

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