Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2018-05-16
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

Trans man hits Niles spa with discrimination complaint
by Kate Sosin, Windy City Times
2012-12-11

facebook twitter google +1 reddit email


A Chicago area spa is facing down discrimination allegations, after management told a transgender person he could not use the spa's men's shower area.

Levi Pine, a Chicago transgender man, has filed an Illinois Dept. of Human Rights (IDHR) complaint against King Spa & Sauna in Niles, after a manager told him he would have to use a private shower or leave.

"The experience I had was particularly degrading," said Pine.

Pine has been on masculinizing hormones for a year. When he went to the spa on Dec. 9 with a friend, he used the men's shower facilities. Pine said the manager approached him while he was naked and asked to speak with him.

Both the manager and Pine tell the same story about what happened next.

The manager, who identified himself as John but declined to provide a last name to Windy City Times, questioned Pine about his gender. Pine told John that he was transgender, and John said he could provide Pine with a private shower.

Pine said he did not want a private shower and that he could use the same facilities used by other customers. But, John said, other customers had complained.

"We only have a men's spa and a women's spa," John told Windy City Times.

John said he recognizes that transgender people are a minority, and said that he treats all of his customers the same. But he didn't want other customers to feel uncomfortable, he said.

Pine told John that he felt he was being discriminated against.

"I shouldn't have to be sequestered into a private area," Pine later told Windy City Times. "Just because some people who go there are uncomfortable with my body, shouldn't change what I have to do and shouldn't change my rights as a customer."

Two attorneys agree.

Joanie Rae Wimmer, the attorney behind the first successful transgender case under the Illinois Human Rights Act, said she believes Pine has a valid claim.

"It's clear that they denied him enjoyment of equal facilities," she said.

Wimmer points out that the same Illinois law that protects gender identity in public accommodations also applies to race. Customers could not dictate that an African American man should have to use a separate shower because others were uncomfortable, she pointed out.

The Illinois Human Rights Act does make exceptions for the case of "sex" in locker rooms, health clubs and other settings. But Wimmer said she believes that exception only applies to "sex" and not to "gender identity," two different protected categories.

John Knight, LGBT project attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union of Illinois, echoed similar sentiments.

Assuming Pine's version of events are true, he said, "I think certainly, he's got a valid claim."

"It's stigmatizing. It's not fair treatment," Knight said. "That would violate the Human Rights Act, to force him into a private facility."

Pine's state identification marker does not say "male," a fact that Knight says should not change his case.

Pine has filed an IDHR complaint against the spa, sent a letter to the spa and notified the Cook County Department of Human Rights. Pine said he simply wants an apology, and wants the spa to adopt a new trans-friendly policy.

"As mad as I am, I feel like this was an opportunity to have dialogue that wouldn't have happened otherwise," said Pine.

John, the spa manager, says that if there is a better solution than offering a private room, he does not see it.

"The naked man in the women's spa: that is equal?" he said. "I don't think so."


facebook twitter google +1 reddit email





Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

Recent Preemption Bills Undermine Democracy and Threaten LGBT Equality 2018-05-18 - Washington, D.C., May 8, 2018—Across the country, cities and counties are taking steps to promote progress and to protect their residents on a ...


Gay News

2018 Transgender Military Summit June 6-8 in Washington, DC 2018-05-18 - The Transgender American Veterans Association, along with the World Professional Association for Transgender Health and the LGBT Bar, have announced the 2018 Transgender ...


Gay News

Anti-LGBTQ Tony Perkins, Gary Bauer appionted to Commission on Internat'l Religious Freedom 2018-05-16 - WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, the Human Rights Campaign ( HRC ), the nation's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer ( LGBTQ ) ...


Gay News

Local dealership settles anti-gay discrimination suit 2018-05-16 - A Chicago car dealership will pay $100,000 to settle a U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ( EEOC ) lawsuit, after an employee alleged ...


Gay News

The Shepards keynote hate-crimes summit 2018-05-14 - Judy and Dennis Shepard gave the keynote address at the Matthew Shepard Foundation- and Center on Halsted ( the Center )-sponsored hate-crimes summit ...


Gay News

ACLU asking court to reverse allowing group to intervene in transgender student case 2018-05-13 - CHICAGO — In November 2017, Nova Maday and the ACLU of Illinois filed a lawsuit in Cook County Circuit Court against the Township ...


Gay News

Obama-era guidance protecting safety of transgender prisoners now rolled back 2018-05-12 - From the Human Rights Campaign: WASHINGTON — Today, the Human Rights Campaign ( HRC ), the nation's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and ...


Gay News

Trans military persons file in Trump ban case 2018-05-12 - Transgender military-ban plaintiffs in Doe v. Trump—the first lawsuit to challenge the Trump-Pence ban—filed a cross-motion for summary judgment May 11 in U.S. ...


Gay News

Gay man severely injured in attack/robbery 2018-05-09 - A Chicago resident sustained multiple injuries after a severe beating and robbery the evening of March 23. Glenn Collins, who is gay, had ...


Gay News

Hate-crimes summit at Center on May 10 2018-05-09 - The Matthew Shepard Foundation is joining forces with the Center on Halsted for a hate-crimes summit and community reception, taking place Thursday, May ...


 



Copyright © 2018 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor


 



Sponsor

About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group produces Windy City Queercast, & publishes Windy City Times,
The Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community,
Nightspots, Out! Resource Guide, and Identity.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.