OTTAWA â€“ He came to Canada from Great Britain in 2006 as Tim Bloomfield, got married in Nova Scotia and then split from his wife in 2009.
Now, as Tanya Bloomfield, a transgendered woman, this British citizen is seeking refugee status in Canada.
Bloomfieldâ€™s spousal sponsorship application for landed immigrant status in Canada became invalid when the marriage broke down. Applications for both temporary residence and temporary work permits have been turned down.
â€œI didnâ€™t meet the criteria,â€ Bloomfield told CTV when asked why the applications were rejected.
After refusing to sign a voluntary departure order, Bloomfieldâ€™s lawyer, Lee Cohen, says his client will seek refugee status.
"There are statistics which show there's increasing hate crime within the European Union," Bloomfield told CTV.
Britain, unlike Canada, actually has laws banning discrimination against transgendered people, those who were born with one sex but live as the other.
In 2008, the British government extended equality laws to cover transgendered people. There is even a registry for transgendered people to have their new gender legally recognized.
In Canada, no such registry exists and neither equality nor human rights legislation recognizes transgendered people.
In June, however, Bill C-389 was passed through second reading in the Commons with all-party support. That bill would prohibit discrimination based on â€œgender identity and gender expression.â€
A spokesman for Citizenship and Immigration Minister Jason Kenney declined to comment on this specific case but did acknowledge there are occasional refugee claims from Britain. Most, if not all, are rejected.