A Miss Universe Canada transgender contestant has been thrown out of the competition after it was discovered the 6’1″ blonde model was born a male. Jenna Talackova was disqualified from the Miss Universe Canada competition after it was found she had lied about being born a female on the beauty pageant’s application form.
Jenna Talackova, 23, was thrown out of the Miss Universe Canada pageant “because she did not meet the requirements to compete despite having stated otherwise on her entry form,” the Miss Universe organization said in a press statement. Although Talackova originally stated on her application that she was born a female, she later confessed to being born male when confronted after some staff in the organization became suspicious of her past.
Vancouver native Talackova began identifying as a female at age 4. She started hormone therapy when she was only 13 and had gender reassignment surgery five years later.
Although the Miss Universe organization said they “respect her goals, determination and wish her the best,” the national director of Miss Universe Canada, Denis Davila, said they could not change the rules for Talackova. According to the pageant’s policies, all contestants must be a “naturally born female.”
“She feels like a real girl and she is a real girl,” Davila said. “She didn’t expect people to question it. She was hoping we could put her back in the competition, but the rules are very clear, and there’s no way we can go back on it.”
“I’m disqualified, however I’m not giving up. I’m not going to just let them disqualify me over discrimination,” Talakova said on her Twitter feed. Over 20,000 people have signed a petition at Change.org urging the Donald Trump owned Miss Universe pageant to allow Talakova back in.
Davila, however, says there is “no discrimination here at all” against Jenna Talackova. “We have to have the facts straight … You can look at it the way she wants to look at it … but we all have to follow the same rules.”