Woman says she quit job at YMCA because of mold problem

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. --- A fungus in one local gym facility has a Jacksonville woman on edge. Shellie Trimm is a former employee with the Yates Family YMCA on Riverside Avenue. She says she was forced to quit her job as a front desk receptionist due to the mold growing in the facility.

"I enjoyed selling memberships. Especially to people who couldn't really afford memberships," said Trimm. "I did like my job."

Trimm says she started working at the facility more than a year ago.

"In the first three months I was working there, I had three colds," said Trimm. "Now, before that I hadn't had a cold in years."

Trimm says she found mold in the men's locker room, group workout rooms and the KidZone. She says the mold caused her to have stomach issues and nausea, as well.

"I lost 16 pounds...I think. It might be more," said Trimm.

She says, her weakened immune system couldn't fight off the mold.

According to the Duval County Health Department, children, the elderly, those with allergies or asthma are at greater risk for mold exposure. The list also includes those with weakened immune systems or chemotherapy patients. Trimm was diagnosed with breast cancer a decade ago.

"What it does is it slams your immune system to the ground and it's opens the door for anything that comes your way," said Trimm.

First Coast News reached out to the YMCA for comment. A spokeswoman with the organization tells FCN that a water leak in the woman's locker room and storage area caused the build-up. FCN was told that a mold quality test was performed in nine areas and all of those areas passed health safety inspections. Additionally, tiles were replaced in some areas and the facility is safe, according to the facility spokeswoman.

But Timms wants others to beware saying, "I can deal with myself, you know, I get it. It's fine. But, I am really concerned about the 'At Risk' group."

YMCA did offer to transfer Timms to a different location, however, she declined.


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