Patrick Harrington, owner of Kindness Yoga, closed down nine studios.
The closures came after receiving complaints from a number of Black and transgender yoga instructors. One of their major complaints came from inconsistent responses by the HR. Harrington, living in Costa Rica, admits to becoming “disconnected” from the concerns of his team.
But the instructors accuse Harrington of “performative activism” and tokenism and take their complaints online.
A disgruntled instructor by the name of Davidia Turner posted publicly about the problem she found working for Kindness Yoga
There were still a lack of diversity on their board of members and stressed that there needed to be people of color, specifically black and brown people in the room helping them make decisions that were supportive of the broader community.
Here you can see the full twitter post.
In response to the many allegations against him, Harrington told reporters.
“I am so proud of our organization, our teachers, our students and what these last 20 years have meant to me.”
But he seems to dismiss the overall allegations against him.
I’m honored to have been in the position of holding space for yoga teachers and yoga students, and for the people who we made a difference for, there’s no need to justify or defend anything.
Altogether, it seems that the owner lost track of his business. It also looks like his employees and partners saw an opportunity around the current unrest to do something about it.
The power of social media to be an agent for the worker should not be underestimated.
Unfortunately, I am not sure how effective this approach ended up being for those now out of work. And it does not look like Kindness Yoga will change in any meaningful way.