The Miss Universe Pageant changed its rules this week to allow transgender women to compete. The new rules have not yet been released but pageant officials say they are rewriting the language of the rules to allow transgender contestants.

Mara Keisling, executive director of the National Center for Transgender Equality, told reporters from the Associated Press that “everybody should be allowed to participate in every aspect of society. Absolutely its good news, it’s another pernicious structural discrimination barrier taken down.”

The rule change was announced shortly after officials announced they would allow Jenna Talackova, a transgender Canadian woman, compete. Talackova was initially banned from entering the competition but the advocacy group GLAAD and lawyer Gloria Allred successfully intervened on her behalf.

CBS 4/11/12; AP 4/10/12; CNN 4/10/12

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