After reopening some of the city’s stadiums earlier this month, the company that owns the New York Sports Club announced that it filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on Monday. Town Sports International also runs Boston Sports Club, Lucille Roberts and other fitness brands. The company said it will reorganize the company and continue to operate, “so that our members will not notice service interruptions.”
However, some NYSC members who are not ready to return to the stadium said they are more worried about the reduction in dues.
After the stadium was forced to close due to COVID-19 in mid-March, Town Sports faced a class action lawsuit at the beginning of this year for continuing to charge monthly membership fees. At the time, NYSC members pointed out that they were still charged the standard $1
NYSC reached an agreement with State Attorney General Letitia James in late April to freeze membership and reimburse members for fees collected during the closure of the stadium.
But this month, AG’s office received a new wave of complaints from members of the New York Securities and Exchange Commission (NYSC) who said their accounts had been automatically frozen and reopened at some franchise locations in New York City on September 1. be accused. A spokesperson for the AG office told Gothamist on Monday that although an agreement was reached in April, their investigation of NYSC has never ended and they are continuing to investigate new complaints.
There are liars in the New York Sports Club. .The membership fee has been deducted and the gym has not yet officially opened 😂🤦🏽♂️ @NYSC
-Mone (oneMone_Boogie) September 1, 2020
The New York Sports Club today deducted the membership fee from my credit card without prior notice, and the gym near me has not yet opened. I love @NYSC @TownSportsInt
-Kait Pirie (@KJPirie) September 2, 2020
Linda Pricci of NYSC member Queens, a member, said that despite the suspension of her account in March, she was charged on September 1. She said that when she noticed the charges on September 3, it was difficult to get in touch with anyone in the gymnasium by phone, but in the end the charges were waived and her account was suspended for free after multiple emails and phone calls. January.
Prichy said to Gothamst: “I stinks, I objected to the charges, made all these calls, but many people may not have spent so much effort, so they may have made a lot of money from many people. Money.” “Who knows how much money they make. Many people may bite the bullet and say: “Well, they are very open, so I can’t argue with them. “”
The NYSC website recommends that members go to the stadium to request a suspension, and said: “To ensure that the billing is correct, please request a suspension at least 2 working days before your billing date.” September.
On Monday, Pricci said that she received an email from Town Sports International that will give all members 45 days of free dues.
Prich said: “It made me laugh because they said they were grateful to us, but no, everyone called for what they did and jumped out.”
Urban Sports International did not respond to a request for comment on the new complaint.
The company stated in a bankruptcy statement that “it intends to use the Chapter 11 procedures to conduct further discussions with landlords and other creditors to successfully restructure its debts so that the company is in the best position for the long-term success of the current fitness industry. Environment .”
According to its website, NYSC has taken a series of precautions at locations that reopened this month. All members and employees are required to conduct temperature checks and health checks before entering the gymnasium, wear masks and maintain social distancing indoors. The club also adopted a more thorough cleaning program and canceled certain functions, such as group fitness classes, showers and saunas.
However, public health experts say that there is less risk of exercising outdoors or at home.