#BoycottEquinox and #BoycottSoulCycle began trending after reports of a fundraiser for Donald Trump.

By Kimberly Truong
Aug 08, 2019 @ 10:00 am

After people began canceling their SoulCycle and Equinox memberships and calling for boycotts of the gyms yesterday, both brands — and their controversial chairman — have responded.

The brands drew protest after it was reported that Stephen Ross, founder and chairman of The Related Companies (which owns both Equinox and SoulCycle) would be hosting a re-election fundraiser for Donald Trump this weekend. 

Ross, who also owns the Miami Dolphins, responded to the boycotts in a statement to Bloomberg, defending his decision to host the event. 

“I always have been an active participant in the democratic process,” he said. “I have known Donald Trump for 40 years, and while we agree on some issues, we strongly disagree on many others and I have never been bashful about expressing my opinions.”

He added that he likes to “engage directly and support the things I deeply care about," out of “deep concern for creating jobs and growing our country’s economy.” 

SoulCycle and Equinox also issued statements distancing themselves from Ross and reiterating their belief in "diversity, inclusion, and equality."

On Wednesday, #BoycottEquinox and #BoycottSoulCycle began trending on Twitter after reports that Ross would be hosting a fundraiser for Trump at his Hamptons mansion on Friday. 

RELATED: Why People Are Boycotting Equinox and SoulCycle

In his statement to Bloomberg, Ross added that he is “and will continue to be, an outspoken champion of racial equality, inclusion, diversity, public education and environmental sustainability, and I have and will continue to support leaders on both sides of the aisle to address these challenges.”

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