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Diversity Conference 2021: Protecting and promoting the human rights of intersex and transgender athletes in sport competitions

EPAS Strasbourg, France 6 September 2021
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Diversity Conference 2021: Protecting and promoting the human rights of intersex and transgender athletes in sport competitions

The sports world is largely organised on the basis of the binary categories "women/men", although some people may not fit, and/or may be deemed not to fit, into either of these two categories; this is often the case of transgender and intersex athletes. This categorisation is discriminatory towards such athletes, due to suspicions as to their gender and the checks to which they may be subjected, which - through the application of certain rules - may lead to their being excluded and banned from participating freely in competitions and of performing. This raises the question of gender mainstreaming in sport and the respect of human rights.

How can the protection and promotion of the human rights of intersex and transgender athletes in sports competitions be guaranteed? Following on from its activities to promote inclusive, ethical and safe sport, EPAS held its Diversity Conference in a hybrid format (Paris/online) on 20 September 2021.

The conference brought together athletes from the LGBTI community, sports journalists, human rights and gender experts, representatives from the medical world, speakers from sports bodies such as FIFA and the IOC, representatives from sports federations, clubs and associations, academics and other professionals from the sports community working towards greater inclusion, who discussed the two themes on the agenda. The event also provided an opportunity to hear testimonies from several athletes, including Annet Negesa (Uganda), Chris Mosier (United States) and Natalie Washington (UK) and discover examples of good practice.

At the end of the discussions, a press conference was held.

 

More information on the definition of intersex and transgender people, resources on intersex and transgender athletes and speakers' biographies can be found on the dedicated webpage: