Child beauty pageant blasted for awarding autistic girl Tahnee Myles best personailty[sic]
By Fenella Wagener
From: Herald Sun
August 02, 2011 12:00AM
Tahnee Myles won the best personality prize, despite her autism. Picture: Fiona Hamilton Source: Herald Sun
Mother labels child beauty pageant a farce
A MOTHER labelled Melbourne's child beauty pageant a farce after organisers awarded her autistic daughter best personality prize.
- Organisers say it's about making kids feel good
- More: The ugly truth about child beauty pageants
Child beauty pageant
Child beauty pageant
Exclusive raw footage from behind the closed doors of the contentious child beauty pageant in Melbourne.
Herald Sun30 July 2011
Leonie Myles, who brought her daughter Tahnee to Melbourne for the controversial pageant, said the award showed the event was unprofessional and disorganised, the Herald Sun reports.
"They chopped and changed things at the last minute to suit management due to media issues, so it didn't look so bad in Australia," she said.
- Council shuts door on child pageants Herald Sun, 10 hours ago
- Sad end for pageant puppet Adelaide Now, 1 day ago
- Child beauty pageant Herald Sun, 3 days ago
- Child commissioner to attend pageant NEWS.com.au, 3 days ago
- Princess pageant turns ugly Adelaide Now, 3 days ago
Ms Myles was baffled when her nine-year-old daughter won Best Personality at final judging on Saturday.
"I didn't understand why," she said.
"Tahnee's social skills would not include having the best personality, due to autism. It was getting more sad, watching and wondering how they judged."
One of the event's promoters, Carmen Powell, of Pageants Australia, stood by the decision to give Tahnee the award.
"It's about making the children feel good about themselves, feel worthy," she said.
"Regardless, when you enter your child into a competition the judges' decision is final."
Ms Myles' outcry came as various organisations criticised the Universal Royalty Beauty Pageant and others like it for purposely sexualising participants, some of whom were as young as two years old.
One of Melbourne's top modeling agencies has also attacked the pageant, saying it could contribute to insecurity and body image issues for girls later in life.
"It is hard enough for those in their teens to deal with the ongoing hardships of self image, but to put this on to those barely past infancy is disgusting," FRM Model Management director Stephen Bucknall said.
The pageant received further scrutiny when organisers were forced to post a note on Facebook agreeing to refund the $50 entrants spent ordering a photo and autograph from US pageant idol Eden Wood, who was scheduled to participate.
Eden, six, pulled out of the event unexpectedly due to the increasing criticism it was receiving.
Source: Child beauty pageant blasted for awarding autistic girl Tahnee Myles best personailty | News.com.au
Universal Royalty pageants are run by that ghastly Annette Hill woman and featured on Toddlers & Tiaras. I wonder if this is going to show up on a future episode.