Chrissy Teigen demands boycott of SoulCycle and Equinox fitness clubs over Trump fundraiser

Statement released states Equinox and SoulCycle 'do not support' Donald Trump fundraiser

Chelsea Ritschel,Sabrina Barr
Thursday 08 August 2019 09:47
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Celebrities including Chrissy Teigen and Billy Eichner have called for a boycott of popular fitness clubs Equinox and SoulCycle after it was reported the chairman of the company plans to hold a fundraiser for President Donald Trump.

Stephen Ross, an investor, owner of the Miami Dolphins, and the chairman of Equinox and SoulCycle’s parent company Related Companies, is hosting a fundraiser for the Trump re-election campaign this weekend at his Hamptons, New York, home.

Tickets for the event reportedly cost $100,000 (£82,185), according to The Washington Post, which includes a photo opportunity with Mr Trump.

For $250,000 (£205,462) guests have the opportunity to attend lunch, a photo-op, and join in on a roundtable discussion with the president.

In response to the report, multiple people have called for a boycott of the luxury exercise brands, and threatened to cancel their memberships.

On Wednesday, Equinox was trending on Twitter as outrage over the support for the presidential campaign grew.

The backlash also captured the attention of #GrabYourWallet founder Shannon Coulter, who runs a list of Trump-associated brands to boycott, tweeted: “This Friday the SoulCycle and Equinox Fitness chairman is throwing a fundraising lunch for Donald Trump’s 2020 presidential campaign.

“Tickets are $100,000 each. Adding to the list.”

Others said they would be handing out flyers to inform members of the sports clubs.

“I will be handing out flyers with this story to patrons entering the Equinox near me this evening,” one man wrote on Twitter. “I urge all of you to do the same.”

Even Dolphins players were among those expressing their disappointment with Ross. On Twitter, wide receiver Kenny Stills shared a screenshot of the mission statement of Ross’s nonprofit RISE, which describes itself as a “national non-profit that educates and empowers the sports community to eliminate racial discrimination, champion social justice and improve race relations”.

Stills captioned the photo: “You can’t have a non-profit with this mission statement then open your doors to Trump.”

However, in a statement released on Twitter and Instagram, Equinox stated that it is not affiliated with the upcoming political fundraiser.

"We want to let you know that Equinox and SoulCycle have nothing to do with the event and do not support it," the statement read.

"As is consistent with our policies, no company profits are used to fund politicians. In fact, we are committed to all our members and the communities we live in."

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The statement continued, explaining that the company believes in "tolerance and equality", values that it will always strive to "stay true to".

"Mr Ross is a passive investor and is not involved in the management of either business," the statement concluded.

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