A teenage girl at a YMCA in Santee, California asserted that she encountered a biological male who identifies as a transgender woman naked in the female locker room.
Rebecca Phillips, 17, recounted the incident in a statement to the Santee City Council earlier this week.
Phillips is a regular visitor of the Santee YMCA, where she says she frequently exercises after work.
“As I was showering after my workout, I saw a naked male in the women’s locker room. I immediately went back into the shower, terrified, and hid behind their flimsy excuse for a curtain until he was gone,” Phillips told the city council.
In her emotional statement, Phillips said that her concerns were dismissed by YMCA staff and that she was made out to be the problem.
She told the council, “When I asked the YMCA management what the policy was regarding transgenders, they confirmed that the man I saw was allowed to shower wherever he pleased.”
She continued, “I was made to feel as though I had done something wrong when I talked to people at the YMCA.”
Phillips claims that her father tried to contact management repeatedly before speaking with the branch’s director of membership, who assured him that his daughter was not in any danger.
The YMCA of San Diego County gave an official statement on the incident to local news station KUSI, writing, “We are aware of a situation involving two members in the locker room of the Santee YMCA earlier this month. The comfort and safety of all our members is our highest priority.”
The statement continued, “As a community focused organization, we strive to meet the needs of all individuals. We recognize that birth and gender identity are sensitive subjects. We rely on subject matter experts, laws, and guidelines established by the State of California to ensure our policies are welcoming and respectful for all community members.”
“As part of this commitment to ensure all individuals feel comfortable, we are reviewing lock room floorplans across all facilities within our association. Our goal is to ensure that everyone has access to additional privacy if desired and needed,” the YMCA concluded.