Generally we’ll hear about somebody from Africa or the Middle East fleeing to Europe to avoid persecution. But Tanya Bloomfield, an Ireland-born trans woman living in Nova Scotia, says she needs to stay in Canada because she faces oppression at home.
Bloomfield says she’s been denied a renewal of her temporary residence permit, and if she isn’t successful in appealing it she’ll claim refugee status based on being transgender, reports CBC. “This is just the latest temporary residence permit that we’ve applied for, which they’re now questioning and wishing to issue the voluntary departure order on,” she says. “I have a lot invested in Canada. I have a lot of friends here, I have a business.”
But is Europe really the bastion of oppression Bloomfield claims? She insists there’s a higher frequency of of queer-related attacks in the European Union than in Canada, which is the crucial element to her case. In Ireland at least, gender reassignment procedures are not recognized, the the court case involving a one Lydia Foy, which would’ve taken the issue to the Supreme Court, was dropped by the government with the intention of introducing legislation to ban it.
If Bloomfield’s asylum request is granted, she’ll have another 18 months to stay in Canada (not for good?). Otherwise she must be gone by August.