Miss Universe allows transgender contestant back into pageant
The Miss Universe Organization reversed its decision to allow a transgender contestant to compete in her country’s pageant Monday evening, provided that she meets certain requirements.
According to CNN, organizers released a statement letting 23-year-old Jenna Talackova into May 19 competition if she meets “the legal gender recognition requirements of Canada, and the standards established by other international competitions.” Miss Universe would not specify what the requirements were.
The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLADD) praised the Miss Universe Organization’s decision.
“The Miss Universe Organization made the right decision and has taken an important first step,” GLAAD said in a statement.
Talackova was selected as one of 65 finalists for Miss Universe Canada but was banned in March from the competition after lying about her undergoing sexual reassignment therapy.
At the time, Miss Universe Organization said all contestants must be a “naturally born female.”
In an interview in 2010, Talackova said she knew she was a girl at age four and began hormone therapy at age 14. She underwent sexual reassignment surgery at age 19.
WATCH: Video from CNN, which was broadcast on April 2, 2012.