24/09/2015 11:48 BST | Updated 24/09/2015 12:59 BST

Miss Transgender UK Pageant Under Fire For Offering Gender Surgery As A 'Prize'

A transgender beauty pageant hosted by former Ukip candidate Kellie Maloney has come under fire for offering gender reassignment surgery as a "prize."

The Miss Transgender UK pageant, which is taking place this weekend on 27 September, offers an all inclusive surgery trip to India as well as a £5,000 cash prize.

Jess Bradley from group Action For Trans Health has spoken out against the event in a blog, writing: "I can’t support the idea of basic healthcare being a 'prize' for those seen as most attractive in the service of a profit-making venture such as Miss Transgender UK.”

Former United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP) Mayoral Candidate Kellie Maloney speaks to delegates during the final day of the party's conference on February 28, 2015

The blog post, written under the title 'Healthcare is a right, not a prize' highlights the danger of using beauty as a factor in achieving the life-changing surgery.

One section states: "This beauty pageant seems to be allocating funds according to who is the prettiest.

"I cant help but imagine how devastating and dysphoria-inducing it must be to get your hopes up of winning the prize. To have them dashed because a bunch of strangers judged you to not be attractive enough."


In July, Maloney discussed the event and said that she hopes the eventual winner will be able to support - and bring awareness to - the transgender community.

She explained the pageant was "not all about beauty" but about what the winner could contribute to transgender issues.

The Huffington Post UK reached out to Miss Transgender UK pageant for comment but have not had a response.