• Friday, June 21, 2024

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Mothers of beauty contest winners in US allege ‘their daughters were abused’

The pageant community was stunned by dual resignations this month when Miss USA Noelia Voigt and Miss Teen USA UmaSofia Srivastava relinquished their crowns.

UmaSofia Srivastava and Noelia Voigt attend Supermodels Unlimited Magazine Presents: Billboards Over Broadway – NYFW Celebrity Event at Nebula Nightclub on February 10, 2024 in New York City. (Photo by Craig Barritt/Getty Images for Supermodels Unlimited)

By: Pramod Thomas

THE mothers of former Miss USA and Miss Teen USA have spoken out about their daughters’ resignations, alleging they were subjected to mistreatment, abuse, bullying, and isolation.

Barbara Srivastava, mother of Miss Teen USA UmaSofia Srivastava, revealed that what initially seemed like a dream job turned into a nightmare for her daughter.

UmaSofia, an Indian American, resigned from her title earlier this month, citing a misalignment of personal values with the pageant organisation.

“After months of deliberation, I’ve chosen to step down from the title of Miss Teen USA 2023,” UmaSofia said in her statement. “I’ll cherish representing my state as a first-generation, Mexican-Indian American at the national level.”

Speaking to ABC’s Good Morning America, Barbara highlighted her daughter’s mistreatment by the Miss Universe Organisation and surveillance of her personal social media.

Jackeline Voigt, mother of former Miss USA Noelia Voigt, who resigned on May 6, shared troubling details of the mistreatment their daughters endured since winning the titles.

The mothers called for an apology from the Miss Universe Organisation, stressing the need for accountability. They revealed they were speaking up for their daughters due to restrictions imposed by non-disclosure agreements (NDAs).

Alleged mistreatment faced by UmaSofia prompted Miss Teen USA runner-up Stephanie Skinner to decline the crown. Skinner expressed support for the resignations, stressing the importance of female empowerment.

The mothers’ accounts shed light on the harsh realities of major pageant participation, cautioning against the glamorous facade. They fear their daughters’ voices may be silenced forever due to NDAs they signed.

Despite the Miss USA organisation’s commitment to fostering a healthy environment, the mothers demand accountability and change within the pageant system. They also called for the resignation of key figures and an apology to rectify the situation.

Three days after Noelia resigned, Claudia Michelle, social media director of Miss USA, also stepped down, citing workplace toxicity and bullying, underscoring the importance of allowing titleholders to voice their concerns.

Miss Universe, which oversees the sister pageants, has declined to comment on these allegations.

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