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Disneyland Paris has apologised after refusing to allow a three-year-old boy o take part in its popular “princess for a day” experience because he is not a girl.
According to his mother, Hayley McLean-Glass, little Noah was “buzzing with excitement” when he found out the theme park offered the chance to dress up as princesses, including his favourite character from the Frozen film, Elsa.
But his mother said she was left devastated when she tried to book the treat by email, only to receive a response, which read: “At this time it is not possible to book princess for a day for a boy.”
Speaking to ITV news, Ms McLean-Glass, from Paignton in Devon, said: “I just think that it’s unfair, I mean if there was an activity such as a pirate dress up or a Spiderman event, little girls would be allowed to do it.
“If anyone told a little girl that she couldn’t do that there would be absolute uproar, but I just don’t understand why it’s different for a boy.”
The angry mum said Noah dresses up as Princess Elsa at home, wearing his dress “from the minute he gets up… until the minute he goes to bed”.
“He listens to ‘Let It Go’ all day. It’s his absolute favourite thing. He is absolutely obsessed with Frozen, particularly Elsa. He loves all of the Disney princesses really,” she continued.
“I just thought I saw that this was a thing you could do. I knew that he would love it. I thought I’d book it as a treat for him really. I emailed them to try to book it and they told me he can’t do it because he’s a boy.”
Ms McLean-Glass challenged the decision in an open letter posted on her blog, writing: “This isn’t even a gay/straight debate…this is a child. Who wants to be just like his favourite character.
“Please do explain to me what terrible awful fate may befall him if you indulge him in his desire to have his hair done, put on an Elsa dress and wear a bit of blusher for a photo? Because frankly, I am baffled.”
A Disneyland Paris spokesman told ITV News: “We are taking this situation very seriously and sincerely apologise to Hayley and Noah for the distress caused.
“An isolated incident, the cast member’s response is not reflective of any policy or belief held here at Disneyland Paris. We are going to ensure this does not happen again.
“Diversity is near and dear to our hearts and we want to make sure that all our guests enjoy their experience at our resort. Of course, both boys and girls are welcome to enjoy the princess for a day experience in addition to all our other special activities.”
Additional reporting by Press Association.
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