On Monday, members of the International Olympics Committee (IOC) unanimously voted to formally protect lesbian, gay and bisexual people in the Olympic Charter.
The IOC voted to amend the anti-discrimination principle of the Olympic Charter to specify that it applies to discrimination on grounds of “sexual orientation” as well as race, gender, politics and religion. The IOC approved Proposal 14 of the Olympic Agenda 2020 at a vote in Monaco. The amendment implies that countries with laws that actively discriminate against gay people will not be able to apply to host. It followed the huge global protests earlier this year, protesting Russia’s treatment of LGB people before the Sochi Olympics.
Andre Banks, Executive Direct and co-founder of All Out welcomed the change:
“The Olympic Movement has now stood up for love and equality by officially recognizing gay, lesbian and bi athletes and fans […] This gain was made possible because of the global outcry demanding ‘No More Sochis’, including from hundreds of thousands of All Out members. We will continue to push to make sure this change is reflected in the selection of new host cities and expanded to include protections for gender identity.”
All Out members, a week before the vote, called for the IOC members to include ‘gender identity’ in the amendment to protect transgender athletes and fans, but it has yet to be voted on. It won’t be included in this current amendment.
All Out launched the Principle 6 campaign last year to highlight non-discrimination in the Olympics.
“There is no greater sign of progress in combating homophobia in sports than to have the oldest organized athletic competition in the history of the world saying enough is enough,” said Hudson Taylor, Executive Director of Athlete Ally.
“The Olympic Charter took a major step today recognizing that the practice of sport is a human right and that every individual must be able to practice without discrimination.”
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