A gym owner in Ottawa is standing up to the Ontario government’s incoming vaccine passport system. 

The owner of OCR Academy Joshua Fry told the Ottawa Citizen that he will not ask clients to prove their vaccination status to attend his business as of September 22, 2021. 

“Everybody is entitled to fair and equal treatment, not to be refused entry,” said Fry. 

“At the end of the day, we are not an epidemiology facility, we are not a political party. We just simply lift things up and put things down and we want to provide that service for as many people as possible.”

In Ontario, proof of vaccination status will be required to enter “non-essential services” such as restaurants, bars, events, fitness facilities or other public indoor settings.

Those who are unable to prove that they have been vaccinated would be denied access to those spaces. 

“It’s not that we’re anti-vax, and it’s not that we think this pandemic isn’t real. In this particular case, enough is enough and I’m not going to stand for it. I feel comfortable I’ve stood up against a law I don’t feel is just,” said Fry. 

According to him, he had received very little negative feedback from clients after informing over 5,000 people on his business’ mailing list. 

“The nature of our gym does pose many risks. We have in place rules that are designed to keep you and your family safe … strict measures when it comes to cleanliness, sanitation, masks in common areas, physical distance, pre-screening and educating people,” wrote Fry in the email.

As a result of his decision, 151 people had cancelled their membership, however, 3 new members joined. 

Fry could face penalties up to $750 as an individual or over $1,000 as a corporation depending on what public health orders were broken. 

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