IOC President Thomas Bach
The president of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), Thomas Bach, has called for the Olympic Charter to expressly ban discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.
Bach made the recommendation on Tuesday as part of a series of 40 proposed changes to the Olympic Games that will be discussed and voted on by the IOC in December in Monaco.
Bach proposed in the 14th recommendation: “The IOC to include non-discrimination on sexual orientation in the 6th Fundamental Principle of Olympism.”
Principle 6 of the Olympic Charter currently reads: “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.”
Specifically including sexual orientation non-discrimination in the charter will go some way towards appeasing LGBT rights groups who criticised the IOC for insisting on hosting the Sochi Winter Olympics in Russia earlier this year, despite that country’s enactment of a discriminatory “gay propaganda” law.
During the launch of the recommendations at The Olympic Museum in Lausanne, Bach called the new proposals “the culmination of a year of open, transparent and widespread debate and discussion, which had already begun in mid-2013.”
In September it was announced that the “the prohibition of any form of discrimination, using the wording of Fundamental Principle 6 of the Olympic Charter” would be added to any future host country contract.