In a media release, the Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms says it has been retained to defend another beauty salon that has had a complaint launched against it by Jessica Yaniv, the transgender activist who previously sued B.C. salons because they refused to wax her.
Yaniv, a transgender woman, previously took action against a number of B.C. salons that refused to wax her scrotum during bikini waxes that she had requested, but in a ruling earlier this year on three such complaints, the British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal dismissed her argument. The tribunal, in October, said she launched the complaints for financial gain, and that she was nursing a particular grievance against South Asian people.
“I am satisfied that the pattern is deliberate and motivated by (the complainant’s) animus towards certain, non-white, immigrants to Canada and, in particular, members of South Asian and Asian communities,” the adjudicator wrote.
She “targeted small businesses, manufactured the conditions for a human rights complaint, and then leveraged that complaint to pursue a financial settlement from parties who were unsophisticated and unlikely to mount a proper defence,” the ruling added.
Now, the Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms says Yaniv has launched a separate complaint, against a salon run by immigrant women who are of the Sikh faith. The salon, She Point Beauty Studio in Surrey, B.C., says it was approached by Yaniv seeking services in August of last year, like Brazilian bikini waxing and leg waxing. “Leg waxing takes place in private with the customer in their underwear or nude from the waist down,” the Justice Centre said.
The studio turned Yaniv down, saying it only served females, and further rejected her request because of “religious, cultural and safety reasons.” The salon was not previously associated with the three complaints that were earlier dismissed.
It remains unclear whether the British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal will hear the new case, which was reportedly filed in October 2019, but the Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms says it expects the complaint to proceed at some point in 2020. The tribunal did not return a request seeking further information.
At the time of the initial ruling against Yaniv, Jay Cameron of Justice Centre, legal counsel for the estheticians, said:
“Self-identification does not erase physiological reality. Our clients do not offer the service requested. No woman should be compelled to touch male genitals against her will, irrespective of how the owner of the genitals identifies.”
Correction: A previous version of this article incorrectly listed the title of the Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms as the Centre for Constitutional Freedoms.
— with files from Joseph Brean, National Post
Listen to our Canadian news podcast, 10/3