Featured events

7-9 September 2012
Brussels Games

Brussels Gay Sports will offer a weekend of fun and fairplay in the capital of Europe, with volleyball, swimming, badminton, and tennis, as well as fitness and hiking.

Learn more HERE.
26-28 October 2012
Bern, Switzerland

The success of the first edition of the QueergamesBern proved the need for an LGBT multisport event in Switzerland. This year will be even bigger, with badminton, bowling, running, walking, floorball.

Learn more HERE.
17-20 January 2013
Sin City Shootout
Las Vegas
The 7th Sin City Shootout will feature softball, ice hockey, tennis, wrestling, basketball, dodgeball, bodybuilding and basketball.

Learn more HERE.

13-16 June 2013
IGLFA Euro Cup
After this year's edition in Budapest at the EuroGames, the IGLFA Euro Cup heads to Dublin for 2013, hosted by the Dublin Devils and the Dublin Phoenix Tigers.

Learn more HERE.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

FGG, along with IGLFA and Football v Homophobia, present letter to Brazilian and Russian Ambassadors

Today the French Olympic Committee hosted at its headquarters the 17th annual strategic conferences of the IRIS think tank. The theme of the conferences was "The strategic stakes for sport" (program HERE).

Originally the Brazilian and Russian ambassadors to France were to speak during the session devoted to "competition for the organization of world-class sports competitions". The FGG wanted to take advantage of this opportunity to call on these countries to respect human rights for all and to ensure that homophobia not spoil the events they'll be hosting (each country will be hosting both the FIFA World Cup and the Olympic Games). Our primary concern of course is Russia.

We were joined by FGG member organization International Gay and Lesbian Football Association, and by Football v Homophobia (read below). The goal was to have Marc Naimark, FGG vice president for external affairs, present these letters by hand to the ambassadors (who were in fact replaced by embassy advisors).

During the session, another participant raised the question of human rights in host countries. We expected a denial of any problems from the Russian embassy, but the response was particularly grotesque, along the lines of "Human rights? We don't respect human rights in Russia? I am totally confused by your question!" The response from the Brazilian representative was hardly better: "We have had enough of certain countries who think they can teach us lessons, who treat us as natives who they need to civilize." And all day long, the organizer of the event, Pascal Boniface, head of IRIS, treated with the greatest contempt any criticism of host countries on human rights grounds. But this is hardly surprising when you learn that Mr Boniface often works as a consultant in the Gulf, and often visits Qatar.(And we'll note in passing that of the 19 moderators and speakers, a grand total of 1 was a woman, former health and sports minister Roselyne Bachelot-Narquin.)

You are speaking today at a conference on sport hosted by the French Olympic Committee. You are participating as representatives of your countries, which will soon be hosting major international sports events: the FIFA World Cup and the Olympic Games. Brazil will be hosting the World Cup in 2014, and Russia in 2018, with the Winter Olympics hosted in Sochi in 2014 and the Summer Games in Rio in 2016.

These events must promote the universal values of sport, and in particular the principles of the Olympic Charter which declares that “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”.

As LGBT sports organizations, we are concerned by the way in which LGBT athletes, trainers, journalists, officials, volunteers, spectators and fans will be treated at your events. The case of Russia is particularly worrying, given the progression of institutional homophobia in the country, the refusal of a project for a Pride House in Sochi, and a climate of violence and threats.

Everyone must be able to participate in sport, and all the more so for sports events that are supposed to unite people in universal human values.

This is why we are asking you to communicate to the political and sporting authorities of your countries our call for sports events that are open, welcoming, and safe for all, and in particular for LGBT participants, and to offer our assistance to make this so.

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