Massage Therapist Suspended for Reading Fantasy Novel Summaries During Massages

Massage therapist Surrey

A massage therapist is facing a five-day suspension, after being caught using his phone at work. But this wasn’t your typical texting or checking Facebook on your work computer.

The B.C. registered massage therapist would use one hand to massage clients, while he used the other to read fantasy novel summaries.

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Practising in Surrey, Chris Elson was banned from having his cellphone or other devices in his treatment room. He will also face a suspension as part of an agreement with the College of Massage Therapists of B.C.

The college said Elson’s misconduct was a serious matter.

“A patient who sees his or her RMT using a mobile phone while he or she is unclothed during a massage therapy treatment is likely to become distressed and upset,” the public notice said.

That’s exactly what happened in March 2019, when a client complained about Elson. She thought Elson may have been taking photos or filming her, when she saw his phone on during their session.

Elson was told then not to bring his phone into his treatment room, but was caught again in June 2019.

An undercover investigator from the collage said Elson had spent at least 15 minutes of her appointment on his phone. He was apparently reading wiki pages about the fantasy book series Malazan Book of the Fallen.

Elson denied using his phone to take photos or video, but admitted he was reading book summaries during appointments.

Aside from his suspension, the massage therapist must complete remedial education and pay $3,000 in fines to the college.

Meanwhile last year, a Surrey massage therapist was charged for sexually assaulting clients.

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