Anti-discrimination clause added to Olympic host city contract

Daniel Wren

The International Olympic Committee has announced it is adding an anti-discrimination clause to its host city contract in the wake of the Sochi 2014 Winter Games.

The clause says:

Any form of discrimination with regard to a country or a person on grounds of race, religion, politics, gender or otherwise is incompatible with belonging to the Olympic movement.

Christophe Dubi, director of sport, says this clause is rooted in the spirit of principle 6 of the Olympic charter, which is being made explicit by the addition of the clause.

52 Olympians apparently contacted Russian authorities to request the country reconsider laws that affect LGBT+ people – primarily the ‘anti-gay propaganda’ law, which carries echoes of the UK’s Section 28. This included 12 athletes who competed in the 2014 games.

More than 80,000 people worldwide signed a petition calling on the IOC to implement such a clause.

All Out co-founder Andre Banks, who alongside other campaign groups called for the change to the host city contract, says, ‘This is a significant step in ensuring the protection of both citizens and athletes around the world and sends a clear message to future host cities that human rights violations, including those against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people, will not be tolerated.

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‘This is a particularly important moment for the world’s lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender citizens who face discrimination and persecution not only in Russia but in countries all over the world. We will continue working to make sure this change is powerfully enforced – these new rules must prevent a replay of Sochi.’

Three cities are on the final shortlist for the 2022 Winter Olympics: Oslo, Norway; Almaty, Kazakhstan; and Beijing, China.

About Daniel Wren

Vada Magazine staff writer. Interested in travel, news, politics and dating.