No new twists on Curves closures

Alisha Morrissey
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Health Employees, most customers left in the dark

Sarah Reardon quit her job to take on a new position as manager of a women's-only gym.

She started work and immediately realized she wanted to be more hands-on with her new customers and started planning to become a personal trainer.

But that all came to a halt on the afternoon of Jan. 16.

As she was working away, an employee came to tell her the owner had called. They had to kick out the customers and shut the doors immediately. Curves at Ropewalk Lane was closed.

Three Curves locations in Newfoundland have been closed down with no explanation given. - Photo by Gary Hebbard/The Telegram

Sarah Reardon quit her job to take on a new position as manager of a women's-only gym.

She started work and immediately realized she wanted to be more hands-on with her new customers and started planning to become a personal trainer.

But that all came to a halt on the afternoon of Jan. 16.

As she was working away, an employee came to tell her the owner had called. They had to kick out the customers and shut the doors immediately. Curves at Ropewalk Lane was closed.

Reardon said she asked the owners whether she should put some sort of sign on the door to let people know what was going on, but she was explicitly told not to. She went home and mulled over what had happened.

Reardon said she later discovered the two other Curves gyms owned by Raymond Guy - one in Paradise and another in Long Pond - had also closed the same afternoon.

Several weeks later, she called The Telegram, angry she and 11 other people were not only out of work, but most were still owed money.

Reardon wasn't the only angry employee. Another, who asked to remain anonymous, sent a letter to The Telegram personally apologizing to her customers.

"What about the members? Our 'ladies' who were like family to us? What was going to happen to them when they showed up for their workout later on that day? Some of our members have been attending our facilities for 10 years and they all depended on us for support," she wrote.

"It seems nobody, not even labour standards, can provide us with answers because nobody knows.

"As for our members, we apologize from the bottom of our hearts. ... We really care about you and we were so proud of your dedication and accomplishments."

A number of customers contacted the Better Business Bureau (BBB) to file complaints.

Lisa Gray, executive director of the BBB, said usually if a company goes bankrupt, the bureau can't take formal complaints. They have to be passed on to the company's trustee. But in this case, there appears to be no paperwork filed for bankruptcy with Industry Canada, and no one can figure out who the company's trustee is.

The Telegram, the employees and the BBB tried unsuccessfully to reach the owner of the three Curves outlets.

As well, Curves International hasn't returned messages or e-mails left at its customer service desk and the public relations department.

"We know that the owner has gotten ahold of some of the consumers; some have left massages and the owners called them back, but other than that, we haven't heard hide nor hair of the owners since," Gray said of the only contact anyone seems to have had with the company.

As of now, customers and employees are out the money they're owed.

"This is completely unjust. ... It's ridiculous," Reardon said.

amorrissey@thetelegram.com

Organizations: Better Business Bureau, Industry Canada, Curves International

Geographic location: Paradise, Long Pond

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Recent comments

  • yo mama
    March 04, 2012 - 10:34

    Donny's right....I however blame technology, when I was a kid, unless it was a blinding snowstorm, I was NEVER allowed in the house only to eat, then get my ass back outside. Being sent to your room meant either reading or staring at the wall. With each passing generation our world gets lazier and fatter.

  • Leah
    July 02, 2010 - 13:31

    Donny Dooley, surely you only made such a comment JUST TO GET ATTENTION because no one could be so mean, cruel, rude, heartless, obnoxious, arrogant, unkind, etc., to post what you did. And it's certainly far from a joke.
    But you did actually take the focus off the closure of the gyms and get it turned to you, so it worked.

  • Donny
    July 02, 2010 - 13:30

    The BBB is useless. You're better off taking your complaint to the guy playing the guitar in front of Nonia.
    From what I see walking around this city we could use a Curves on every corner. No offence.

  • Highly Offended
    July 02, 2010 - 13:25

    No offense!? Donny Dooley, your comment is so incessant that I can hardly respond without using every possible expletive in known human languages that I wouldn't face permanent damnation in this life and the next!

    And while you're out perusing our fine downtown streets, apparently sizing up every female in the city, I highly suggest you make your way to the adult toy shop and buy yourself a name-sake because buddy if you have a woman in your life it won't be for long if she's got either sense about her.

  • Ise the By
    July 02, 2010 - 13:22

    Hope the owner gets what he deserves for leaving the employees (and customers) like this, without compensating.

  • Lou
    July 02, 2010 - 13:21

    Some people here are getting very easily offended. Donny Dooley made a JOKE, yes a joke, and hissy fits follow. Lighten up, people!

    By the way, his joke does have merit. The number of obese and overweight individuals in this province is alarming.

    To Peggy, I quote Jean Kerr: I'm tired of all this nonsense about beauty being skin deep. That's deep enough. What do you want, an adorable pancreas?

  • Peggy
    July 02, 2010 - 13:20

    Donny Dooley, Your last sentence was absolutely uncalled for, and not only insulting, but hurtful. This is not the issue at hand; the sudden closure of Curves Gyms is the issue. And by the way, it's on the inside of a person that counts, not the outside. For you to make such a comment, you must have the looks on the outside, but certainly not a kind, considerate heart on the inside.

  • rua
    July 02, 2010 - 13:14

    Wow here comes the fat chicks!!! Seems to me Curves does a great service to mankind. It saves society a lot of money in food, anti depressents and bon bons. Quit whining and workout at home if your serious.

  • Leah
    July 01, 2010 - 20:20

    Donny Dooley, surely you only made such a comment JUST TO GET ATTENTION because no one could be so mean, cruel, rude, heartless, obnoxious, arrogant, unkind, etc., to post what you did. And it's certainly far from a joke.
    But you did actually take the focus off the closure of the gyms and get it turned to you, so it worked.

  • Donny
    July 01, 2010 - 20:18

    The BBB is useless. You're better off taking your complaint to the guy playing the guitar in front of Nonia.
    From what I see walking around this city we could use a Curves on every corner. No offence.

  • Highly Offended
    July 01, 2010 - 20:11

    No offense!? Donny Dooley, your comment is so incessant that I can hardly respond without using every possible expletive in known human languages that I wouldn't face permanent damnation in this life and the next!

    And while you're out perusing our fine downtown streets, apparently sizing up every female in the city, I highly suggest you make your way to the adult toy shop and buy yourself a name-sake because buddy if you have a woman in your life it won't be for long if she's got either sense about her.

  • Ise the By
    July 01, 2010 - 20:06

    Hope the owner gets what he deserves for leaving the employees (and customers) like this, without compensating.

  • Lou
    July 01, 2010 - 20:04

    Some people here are getting very easily offended. Donny Dooley made a JOKE, yes a joke, and hissy fits follow. Lighten up, people!

    By the way, his joke does have merit. The number of obese and overweight individuals in this province is alarming.

    To Peggy, I quote Jean Kerr: I'm tired of all this nonsense about beauty being skin deep. That's deep enough. What do you want, an adorable pancreas?

  • Peggy
    July 01, 2010 - 20:02

    Donny Dooley, Your last sentence was absolutely uncalled for, and not only insulting, but hurtful. This is not the issue at hand; the sudden closure of Curves Gyms is the issue. And by the way, it's on the inside of a person that counts, not the outside. For you to make such a comment, you must have the looks on the outside, but certainly not a kind, considerate heart on the inside.

  • rua
    July 01, 2010 - 19:53

    Wow here comes the fat chicks!!! Seems to me Curves does a great service to mankind. It saves society a lot of money in food, anti depressents and bon bons. Quit whining and workout at home if your serious.