Small spa fined $35k for refusing to wax trans-identifying man

In March 24, a trans-identifying customer using the pseudonym “A.B.” filed a human rights application at the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario against a beauty salon called Mad Wax Windsor Inc. A.B. had called by phone to book an appointment and claims that he was refused a leg wax by a staff member and the salon owner, Jason Carruthers. The HRTO has decided to award A.B. $35,000 in damages—because the salon only served women. 

According to A.B.—the CBC account of the story simply refers to A.B. as a “woman” (not even “transwoman” anymore) and claims that Carruthers told A.B. by phone that he had no staff members who were comfortable providing services to “someone like you”; Carruthers corrected the record by noting that he had not used that phrase but said he had no staff willing to provide “male waxing services.”  

Predictably, the HRTO adjudicator, Karen Dawson, sided with A.B., claiming that A.B. was “misgendered” by Carruthers—that is, Carruthers referred to A.B. as male rather than as female. “The applicant’s evidence about the telephone call was clear and consistent throughout her testimony,” Dawson wrote in the May 23 decision. “By contrast…the individual respondent’s evidence changed on key points, when challenged on cross-examination. For these reasons, where their evidence differs, I prefer the evidence of the applicant.” 

I suspect the term “prefer” is doing a lot of heavy lifting there, for a number of obvious reasons. Dawson is not ruling simply on whether or not A.B. was “discriminated” against—she is ruling, fundamentally, in favour of the much-contested premises of the transgender movement. Dawson would charge J.K. Rowling with “damages.” For that matter, her ruling pits her against her with the previous generation of feminists. But that doesn’t matter for Carruthers and his salon staff, who have been not only ordered to pay a small fortune (with interest!), but to submit to re-education, a swell—“online human rights training.” 

“This decision brings me some piece,” A.B. announced in a media release. “It helps tell the story of the discrimination I faced and the steps taken to escalate that discrimination and harassment against me.” According to A.B.’s lawyer, Megan Evans Maxwell of the Human Rights Legal Support Centre: “We feel this is an incredibly significant case for trans people and we really do think that this is a move in the right direction.” Maxwell also noted that A.B. hopes “the decision will lead to societal change.”  

The salon workers who did not want to wax a male body, of course, have been entirely erased. Their rights mean nothing; their comfort zones mean nothing; their beliefs mean nothing. Carruthers’ small business means nothing, either. He noted that the ruling is “unjust” and that he is “shocked by the awarded amount as a small business owner.” But the HRTO was obviously trying to send everyone a message: Wax the man’s legs, bigots. Or we’ll bankrupt you. Carruthers testified that A.B. threatened him with a “media circus”; the HRTO rejected his testimony. When Carruthers issued a press release about the human rights complaint about him, the CBC reported that “the adjudicator found the outreach to the media constituted reprisal for the human rights complaint.” 

In other words, Carruthers wasn’t even allowed to speak publicly about what was happening to him without being penalized. Shut up. Wax male bodies. And if you say anything to anybody, your punishment will be harsher. Raymond Colautti, Carruthers’ lawyer, has applied for judicial review, calling the ruling “deeply flawed” and stating that it “must be set aside.” Carruthers and his attorney dispute many aspects of A.B.’s testimony.  

Remember when the LGBT movement’s favorite argument was: “How does any of this hurt you?” The answer is: Female salon workers can be forced to wax trans-identifying customers—or face brutal penalties.  

One thought on “Small spa fined $35k for refusing to wax trans-identifying man

  1. Navi says:

    Jessica (né Jonathan) Yaniv was the prototype stalking horse. TRAs kept enough distance from him to not look like a bunch of racist pedophiles, but they fully support his #waxmyballs campign. Here they’ve just found someone not as rough around the edges (or at least someone smart enough to remain anonymous so normal people don’t see how ridiculous he looks).

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