Fallon Melillo took to TikTok to share how a party bus had a disclaimer stating: "Sorry, no big girls for this party! The doorman is very strict on appearance."
Fallon Melillo is a body positivity and body acceptance advocate from San Antonio, Texas. She is speaking about the discriminatory and anti-fat policies she experienced at the Daer Dayclub at the Hard Rock Hotel in Miami. She was turned away from a pool party because of her size and weight. Melillo then took to TikTok and Instagram to bring attention to this regressive and exclusionary rule.
In a video that has since gone viral on TikTok, Melillo explains how, what should have been a fun time with friends, turned into a horrible and humiliating experience for her.
Woman 'humiliated' after being denied entry to party bus because of her weighthttps://t.co/scttA9fGbY pic.twitter.com/e1AUTGRiDm— The Mirror (@DailyMirror) August 11, 2021
Melillo was with her friends in Miami in July for a weekend. They decided to go to a pool party and to make it an even more memorable trip, the girls decided to take the party bus to the event. One of her friends managed to get tickets for all of them from the promoter of the party. Each ticket cost them $50. The night before, Melillo took a look at the party page on Eventbrite. There, she was shocked to see the ridiculous conditions for being allowed access to the party.
She shared a screenshot of the Eventbrite page that read: "Sorry, no big girls for this party! The doorman is very strict on appearance. If you have had problems getting into exclusive clubs before, then this is not for you! Please don't waste your time nor ours thinking that we can get you inside if you do not meet the qualifications." This is clear discrimination based on a person's weight. Sadly, the American legal system offers little to no recourse for people who have been treated unfairly because of their size, as per The Washington Post. And discrimination based on weight is still legal in 49 states.
Melillo and her friends reached out to Daer to find out if they actually had such a policy but were assured that they do not discriminate against weight. They were hopeful things would be fine. But it did not turn out that way. They got to the party bus, where one of the staff members told Fallon’s friend that they would not be allowing Melillo on board because of her weight. She felt utterly humiliated and embarrassed.
Speaking about the humiliation she stated, “Being turned away in front of other people because of how I look and my size was absolutely humiliating. I was embarrassed and shocked, to say the least. Even though I know I am beautiful on the inside and out, this moment made me feel helpless. This is what every plus-size person fears—being turned away from an event because of how we look.” No one intervened to take a stand against how Melillo was being treated. The group of friends got their refund for the party bus and they had to find an alternate means of transportation to the party.
The party page made some edits to their page and included yet another discriminatory disclaimer: “As much as we would like to welcome everyone, admission to this exclusive event is very selective and we reserve the right [to] deny service.” It particularly stated: "A model look is encouraged." Melillo shared that the idea that having a model look is encouraged is “disgusting” and discriminatory against plus-size women, as per Bored Panda. She also noted that there are plenty of plus-size models now, so the bus service is not clear with its messaging.
"There is no law but it's downright awful and rude and humiliating," Melillo stated. Discrimination based on weight is a legitimate and prevalent societal problem. It inflicts pain and suffering, and even causes financial harm, and impairs quality of life.