Transgender bride files human rights complaint

Rohit Singh has filed an official complaint with the Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission

Woman refused service at Saskatoon bridal store

Rohit Singh outside the offices of the Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission. (David Shield/CBC)

A transgender woman has filed a human rights complaint against a Saskatoon bridal shop.

Rohit Singh was at the Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission's office in Saskatoon Wednesday morning to file the complaint.

Earlier this month, Singh asked to try on an outfit at Jenny's Bridal Boutique. The store owner refused, she felt other people in the store would be uncomfortable with Singh trying on gowns. Singh believes she was discriminated against.

"It's not just my battle," Singh said. "It's the battle for all the transgendered community, which are discriminated day by day from all society."

Support for Singh

The story received national media attention and a protest was staged outside of the bridal shop. Dozens of people gathered in front of the downtown store to show their support for Singh and to raise awareness of transgender rights.

Activist Miki Mappin took part in the protest and was also present this morning when Singh filed the human rights complaint.

"It's an issue that we all face in many areas in our lives, not just in retail," Mappin said.

Saskatchewan's human rights commissioner David Arnot told CBC News earlier this month that any discrimination, whether it is direct or indirect that a transgender person experiences as the result of a store's policy or rule, is still a human rights violation.

"We live in a multicultural, multidimensional Saskatchewan and these cases are increasing," Arnot said. "We are noticing more and more transgender cases, particularly we've seen examples of bullying at the high school level. We also are aware that Transgender Saskatchewan is very concerned about this. We have met with them."

Once a complaint is filed with the commission, both sides are offered the chance to mediate their dispute. If that doesn't work, the complaint will go to a hearing.