Man kicked out of Vegas pool party for ‘being gay’
UPDATED |A gay man has accused a Las Vegas pool party of homophobia, after he was kicked him out of the event because the bathing suit he was wearing was “too gay.”
In a video posted on Facebook, Chris Donohoe said he was forced to leave the Encore Beach Club pool party on Sunday for wearing a Mr. Turk pair of trunks because staff said that it “was not ‘in integrity’ with the brand of the pool party.”
“In other words, I was kicked out for being a gay man wearing a bathing suit that was just a little too gay for the the Beach Club Encore Las Vegas to tolerate,” Donohoe wrote.
Speaking to PinkNews, Donohoe said that the incident had made him feel “humiliated and ashamed.”
“It felt like every homophobic slur that I’ve ever heard was hurled at me all at one time,” he told PinkNews.
“I feel that this is discrimination and harassment based on my gender identity and sexuality.
“I feel this way because there were women at the pool wearing thongs and other bikini bottoms that were much more revealing than my own, yet they were permitted to stay and I was removed.”
In the video, Donohoe can be heard saying: “As far as I understand the policy is no Speedos, and this is not a Speedo.”
The member of staff responds by saying that the costume goes against the “dress code policy” of the pool party, and is not “in integrity” with Encore Beach Club brand.
Watch the video below:
When Donohoe accuses the employee of making him leave because he’s gay, the member of staff responds: “Sir this has nothing to do with your sexual preference.”
Speaking to PinkNews, Donohoe criticised the pool party’s “no Speedos” rule, saying it “needs to be removed.”
“It’s so obviously targets LGPTQ+ and non-gender conforming people,” he explained to PinkNews. “They need to stop policing people based on their gender identity and sexuality.”
Responding to the incident, Michael Weaver, chief marketing officer of Wynn Resorts, told PinkNews that the company had changed its clothing policy since the incident.
“In order to maintain a five-star experience, Wynn Las Vegas requests that guests adhere to certain dress code policies throughout the resort,” Weaver said to PinkNews.
“In the Encore Beach Club, we had a policy, clearly posted at the entrance, which prohibited Speedos.
“Upon receiving a guest complaint, we reviewed the policy and have changed it.”
Weaver said sorry to Donohoe over what had happened.
“The new policy will allow Speedos, but will prohibit risqué and indecent swimwear for both men and women,” Weaver continued.
“We will include the new policy on entry signage, as well as the club website, in order to help guests plan appropriately and enjoy a welcoming environment. We apologise to the guest who was affected by our previous policy.”
Weaver said that the club welcomes LGBT+ people, insisting that its rules for removing guests from events are based on behaviour and clothing.
“Regarding LGBTQ+ guests, our policy has been clear and consistent for years: Wynn welcomes and appreciates all of our LGBTQ+ guests,” the chief marketing officer said. “Decisions to enforce policies are solely based on guest behavior, or in this case, attire. We have always and will continue to apply attire policies equally to all of our guests, regardless of sexual orientation.”
Since Donohoe posted his video, he said that other gay men told him about similar stories at Encore Beach Club events.
Donohoe posted a video sent to him by a man called Juan Casado, who appeared to be swinging on a pole on a platform at an Encore Beach Club pool party.
The video shows Casado being pushed off the platform by an employee.
Casado told PinkNews that he did not believe the incident was homophobic, but said that it was because of his gender.
He was reportedly told by staff that only women were allowed to swing on the poles at the party.
More from PinkNews
However, Weaver told PinkNews that this video was taken in the summer of 2017 and that, since then, the rules had changed, meaning both men and women can dance on the platforms at events.
Commenting on the video, Weaver said that the employee responsible for pushing Casado no longer worked for the company.
“The footage showing an incident where a guest was removed from a dance pole at Encore Beach Club during the summer of 2017 took place prior to a policy change allowing men to also dance on platforms if they choose to,” said Weaver.
“The behaviour of the employee in the video is not appropriate; that individual is no longer employed at Wynn Las Vegas.”