Justice Centre defends BC aesthetician facing human rights complaint for not performing waxing service on transwoman

Posted on Aug 22, 2018 in Justice Update, Latest Updates, News Releases

The Justice Centre will represent a British Columbian aesthetician, Shelah Poyer, who faces human rights proceedings for providing only “Brazilian” waxing services and not “Manzilians” or “Bro-zillians.”

In March of 2018, the human rights Complainant, who uses a traditionally masculine name, responded to Poyer’s Facebook advertisement for waxing services for women. The Complainant asked Ms. Poyer if she performs “Brazilians”, which is a waxing of the female groin area. Ms. Poyer responded, “Not for men sorry”.  The procedure for a Brazilian waxing is not used for men; rather men receive “Manzilians”(also called “Bro-zillians”), which utilize different techniques and often a different wax.  Ms. Poyer does not have the requisite supplies or training to provide this service. As such, she is unqualified and unable to provide the service.

The following day, the Complainant phoned Ms. Poyer’s former employer (also named as a respondent in this case), asking to speak with Ms. Poyer about why Ms. Poyer was unable to provide the service for the Complainant.  Not wishing to enter into controversy, Ms. Poyer declined to speak further with the Complainant.

On March 12, 2018, the Complainant submitted a complaint to the BC Human Rights Tribunal against Shelah Poyer, her boyfriend, and Shelah’s former employer, claiming that they had discriminated against the Complainant on the basis of gender identity and expression. The Complainant also seeks $2,500 in damages.

The Human Rights Tribunal has communicated that the Complainant “has filed a large number of complaints of a similar nature”.

A hearing has been set for October 4-5, 2018 at the BC Human Rights Tribunal, 1170-605 Robson Street, Vancouver.