“Massage Envy is committed to providing a safe environment for our members, guests and service providers,” said Joseph C. Magnacca, CEO of Massage Envy. “One incident is too many, which is why our rigorous Commitment to Safety plan is in place to identify and implement measures that will keep the clients and therapists at Massage Envy franchise locations safe.”
Massage Envy’s Commitment to Safety, which was launched in late 2017, further strengthened our existing policies on prevention and handling of inappropriate conduct in the massage therapy room and has further helped our franchisees maintain a safe, secure and professional environment.
A critical component of the Commitment to Safety was the formation of the Safety Advisory Council, an 8-member group made up of leading authorities on sexual assault prevention, investigation and victim support, representatives from the massage therapy profession, Massage Envy franchise owners and members of the Massage Envy leadership team. The Safety Advisory Council draws from its collective expertise to help guide us in our implementation of the Commitment to Safety plan.
“I am confident that the massage industry will be stronger and safer as a result of the actions that Massage Envy is taking,” said Dr. Danielle Dick, a professor at Virginia Commonwealth University, a victim’s rights advocate and member of the Massage Envy Safety Advisory Council.
“RAINN was retained by Massage Envy to conduct a comprehensive assessment of the company’s policies and programs related to client safety. We commend them for taking a timely and in-depth approach to addressing this situation,” said Jodi Omear, vice president of communications for RAINN (Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network), the nation's largest anti-sexual violence organization.
While we will always be in a continual state of improvement with respect to safety at Massage Envy franchise locations, it is important to share an update on progress made in the Commitment to Safety Program’s six-pointplan:
RAINN (Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network), the nation's largest anti-sexual violence organization, has recently concluded an in-depth, end-to-end review and assessment of our policies and protocols. RAINN has provided us with recommendations, which we will share as we implement them.
The Massage Envy Safety Advisory Council has been instrumental in developing and rolling out our new Safety training for franchisees and managers and is actively involved in many additional safety initiatives we are developing and testing.
RAINN and other members of the Safety Advisory Council, along with Melanie Hansen, General Counsel for Massage Envy, facilitated safety training to more than1,300 franchisees and their managers covering the effects of trauma on victims, trauma-informed investigations, recognizing bias inconducting investigations, relevant forensic psychology as it relates to sexual misconduct, and best practices for client communication following a report of sexual misconduct.
We have also launched the Universal Service Provider Compliance Program, a fully automated, third-party system that tracks service providers' compliance with our safety requirements in real time and compliments the existing background screenings required of our franchised locations. The program addresses compliance in the following areas:
- Background Checks
- License Verifications
- Massage Envy University Required Training Completion
- Employment Verifications
If there is an allegation of assault, franchisees are required to provide the client or therapist with a resource brochure that contains local law enforcement and state board contact information in addition to the RAINN Sexual Assault Hotline number. Franchisees are also required to offer a private room in which to notify the authorities or anyone they should choose. Clients have privacy rights and a right to choose who and when they would like to notify anyone outside the location. We also unequivocally support reporting to law enforcement and state boards if a client desires to do so, and we require it whenever and wherever it is required by law.
The new resource brochure contains the RAINN hotline number, which provides immediate confidential assistance, trained staff and other resources, and is readily available at Massage Envy franchise locations.
We have compiled a list of independent, third-party investigators with trauma-informed investigative training that can assist franchisees with investigations.
“In conjunction with our Safety Advisory Council, Massage Envy will continue to raise the bar on existing safety standards in the massage industry and share updates on the progress of the Commitment to Safety plan as they become available,” said Joseph C. Magnacca, CEO of Massage Envy. “Massage Envy’s commitment to providing an accessible, inviting, safe and professional environment to every member, guest and service provider has never been stronger.”