Fat people should be accommodated by the all the same places that thin people should be accommodated. That statement shouldn’t be controversial, and it shouldn’t even need to be said.
Sadly, that’s not the way the world works right now. Fat people can’t even be guaranteed accommodation when our lives depend on it – with healthcare facilities not bothering to have blood pressure cuffs, chairs, or beds to fit us, ambulances to accommodate us, with medicine doses not tested on fat people, and medical students prevented from working on fat cadavers, and with surgeons allowed to refuse to give us routine surgery while requiring us to risk death with dangerous surgery we don’t need.
So if we can’t even count on those who are charged with saving our lives to accommodate us, how can we count on vacation spots? The truth is that we can’t. It’s possible for a fat person to pay a lot to go on vacation only to find that the chairs, beds, resort restaurants, even the poolside chairs don’t accommodate us.
So, while we do the slow and difficult work of creating a world that isn’t full of sizeism and fatphobia, it also makes complete sense to create and enjoy spaces just for us, and James King’s “The Resort” in the Bahamas is exactly that. James is not a fat person, but he was working at another resort when he saw a chair break because it wasn’t built properly to accommodate the woman who was trying to sit in it. Then the hotel tried to charge the woman for the chair.
James says [Content Warning – the linked article uses words that pathologize body size, and obviously the comments are a dumpster fire of fatphobia.) ““I tried to convince the owners that we needed furniture other than this plastic flimsy stuff, and they didn’t care. I decided that I had to do something.” And so he did – including having to design all the furniture and have it built because, as he says “We needed beds that are able to hold up to 1,500 lbs., we needed lounge furniture and beach furniture that doesn’t break. And it just doesn’t exist. So everything that we have there I had to create and prototype.”
And it worked! “The response has been phenomenal,” King says. “I’ve been booked all year and about 10 percent of that is repeat customers, which is amazing when you’ve only been open for two years.”
Fat people deserve to be accommodated and included in all aspects of daily life and The Resort is a step in the right direction.
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