Can You Use Your Own Hand Sanitizer?

(WSVN) - A South Florida man can only use hand sanitizers without alcohol, but his gym requires members use their alcohol-based sanitizer. Can they do that? The answer to that and more in tonight’s Help Me Howard with Patrick Fraser.

Jaye could be one of those before and after pictures.

This was Jaye in 2016. This is Jaye today.

Jaye Allen: “I was 310 pounds about four years ago. I lost over 70 pounds, so the gym is my release.”

The gym makes him happy, and now with COVID, the gym is creating a headache.

Jaye Allen: “I do get tested for alcohol and narcotics, and the one thing they tell you to use is to stay away from all alcohol-based products — sanitizers, mouthwashes, things of that nature.”

As part of a court-ordered deal, Jaye carries his own alcohol-free sanitizer, and then, one day, he walked into his gym where the manager told him he had to use their hand sanitizer.

Jaye Allen: “The reason I had to use his was because he knows what’s is in his hand sanitizer, and he doesn’t know what’s in mine.”

Jaye showed them the alcohol-free sanitizer he uses and explained if he used their sanitizer with alcohol, he could get in trouble.

Jaye Allen: “And he pretty much told me that that’s fabrication. That is not correct, it’s not accurate and that if I want to use his gym, I must use his hand sanitizer, and I cannot provide my own.”

Jaye tried to reason with the gym manager — didn’t work.

Jaye Allen: “He mentioned that there’s a $15,000 fine, that he’s not putting himself at risk, and that either I use his hand sanitizer or I have to find somewhere else to work out.”

The manager says he will be fined by the county if he lets Jaye use his own hand sanitizer. Is the manager right or wrong, Howard?

Howard Finkelstein, 7 News Legal Expert: “He’s wrong. The county order requires the gym to provide sanitizer for its staff and customers, but it does not say anything about a customer using their own hand sanitizer or just soap and water, so Jaye can use his own.”

Many people who are not paying rent have not been evicted because of the state and federal eviction bans.

One fellow said his landlord won’t fix a broken appliance until he pays the rent. Is that legal for the landlord to do?

Howard Finkelstein: “No, because you have a contract, and your landlord has to maintain the rental, but the tenant is out of luck because your remedy is to send a seven-day letter threatening to withhold rent or move out if the appliance is not fixed, but you aren’t paying rent, and you can’t move out, so a tenant really can’t do anything about it.”

The coronavirus moved Florida into what the governor calls Phase Three, lifting many restrictions, but a condo owner said their board still won’t open the pools and other amenities, even though residents are paying for pool maintenance. Does the board have to open things now, and if not, when?

Howard Finkelstein: “No, they still do not. Because the board has the obligation to keep the community safe, they do not have to open the amenities when they think it’s appropriate.”

Jaye Allen: “I’m very happy that you guys were able to help me sort things out.”

And we did. The gym rep told us they spoke to Jaye and “apologized for the misinterpretation of the Broward County order,” adding he is “welcome to bring his own hand sanitizer” to the gym, leaving them with a happy customer.

Jaye Allen: “No, no hard feelings. You know, at the end of the day, what I thought was right by the client was ultimately done. That’s what I was asking for.”

That’s the way you run a business. If you make a mistake, admit it and move on, and if you have a problem you can’t solve, a question you want answered, remember we have been here for 21 years helping you, and we are not about to stop when you need us more than ever.

CONTACT HELP ME HOWARD:
Email: helpmehoward@wsvn.com
Reporter: Patrick Fraser at pfraser@wsvn.com
Miami-Dade: 305-953-WSVN
Broward: 954-761-WSVN

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