A California-based singer says she’s cancelled plans to shoot a music video at a Tsawwassen water park because of what she perceives as an unfair policy around use of change rooms by transgender people.
House music singer Chelsko was looking to recreate scenes from pop-punk band Blink-182’s “First Date” music video which was shot at the same location under its old name, Splashdown Park.
“So I asked them about their facilities policy, if gender-fluid people can use the facilities, or if they can use either one of their choosing, or how that all works, so I sent them a message on Facebook.”
WATCH: The video for Blink-182’s “First Date” was shot at Tsawwassen’s Splashdown Park, now reopening as Big Splash
She said she got no reply from the park itself, so she reached out to its parent company, Executive Group Development, and was told transgender and gender-fluid members of her team would not be permitted to use the park’s regular change rooms.
“And they told me that I would be required to use a private room for safety and for comfort — my people would have to do that. And, I mean, that’s just gender segregation and labelling my team members as other, which is absolutely ridiculous.”
But Big Splash water park says it has no idea what Chelsko is talking about.
A spokesperson for the company says they have no recollection of hearing from the artist about a potential shoot.
And he says the facility is welcoming to people of all genders, and provides family rooms for anyone who is transgender and doesn’t feel comfortable using male or female facilities.
Chelsko’s PR manager Jonathan Yaniv says the team had scouted the park and found renting the entire facility was within the budget for the shoot, but that they’ve now dropped the idea, and are looking at a similar park in Arizona.
Chelsko says that’s because of what she was told about the change rooms.
“I can’t support it. Especially as an artist, Chelsko, who I am. My brand. I can’t support something like that and I wouldn’t want to. I have a lot of people that I work with that I really respect. And some of my crew members are transgender and I would never want them thinking that I was okay with that.”
The water park is set to reopen as Big Splash on Monday.