Disqualified trans contestant takes on Miss Universe
Jenna Owsianik, ctvbc.ca
Published Sunday, April 1, 2012 6:21PM PDT
The buxom, blond beauty pageant contestant who was kicked out of the Miss Universe Canada competition after it was discovered she was born male has hired a lawyer.
Jenna Talackova of Vancouver landed a spot among the 65 finalists set to compete for the crown until contest officials learned she had undergone sexual reassignment surgery. After being disqualified last week, Talackova claims she is the victim of discrimination and has retained legal counsel in Canada and the United States.
Rory Richards, a spokesperson for Talackova, announced a press conference will be held on Tuesday that will provide more details about how the former contestant will proceed.
A statement from Richards reveals Talackova wants back in the pageant.
"We ask Mr. Trump, and the Miss Universe pageant stakeholders, to be on the right side of history, and reconsider their decision to disqualify Jenna on the basis of not being a ‘naturally born female,' and accept Jenna as the brave young woman she clearly is today," Richards said.
Denis Davila, the national director of Miss Universe Canada, said in an interview last week that Talackova was dropped from the competition for lying on her application. He added that no wrongdoings have taken place because the rules state all contestants must be "naturally born female."
"We have to have the facts straight, there is no discrimination here at all," he said.