Federation of Gay Games News

Here you will find all the latest news from The Federation of Gay Games and on sport and culture in our community. 

If you have any news you would like to include or have any media enquiries please contact the relevant person on our contact page.

You can also check out the history of the Gay Games in photos and videos by visiting our massive online archives HERE.

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  • 29 Aug 2020 08:37 | Anonymous

    17 de Agosto del 2020

    Al World Rugby Transgender Working Group,

    La Federación de Gay Games entiende que el World Rugby está proponiendo prohibir a todas las mujeres trans de jugar en competencias de nivel mundial en el rugby.

    Los Titanes Rugby Club en Chile ha traído este asunto a nuestra atención por primera vez, y queremos expresar firmemente nuestra posición de apoyo a la inclusión trans, junto con la comunidad deportiva LGBTQ + global.

    Los principios fundamentales de la FGG son “Participation, Inclusion and Personal Best” (participación, inclusión y mejor marca personal). Estos principios nos ayudan a gobernar nuestras operaciones del día-a-día y tener una propuesta que excluya a las mujeres trans de los equipos de rugby femenino va en contra de estos principios.

    Su propuesta no contiene pruebas suficientes para promover una prohibición general de todas las jugadoras trans. Por supuesto, existen diferencias entre los cuerpos masculinos y femeninos y sus habilidades asociadas, pero esto debe considerarse como individuo.

    Las comparaciones realizadas a lo largo de sus documentos se basan en evaluaciones de personas "típicas", lo cual es insuficiente e injusto para sacar conclusiones.

    Es bueno que la política reconozca los riesgos involucrados desde la perspectiva de un jugador individual, pero esto debe ir más allá. Por ejemplo, se debe considerar cuidadosamente la necesidad de que un hombre trans se mueva directamente a la competencia masculina tan pronto como comience su transición.

    Por mucho que se trate de una decisión sobre las competiciones de rugby de élite a un nivel mundial, establecerá un presidente importante para todos los demás órganos de gobierno a nivel mundial y, en última instancia, todos los sindicatos miembros buscarán adoptar esta postura. Eso significa que esta política tiene el potencial real de tener un impacto global a nivel de participación para prohibir que las mujeres trans jueguen, y esto debe ser reconocido y considerado de manera apropiada.

    Por lo tanto, imploramos a World Rugby Group que revise su política nuevamente y que no avance con su propuesta de prohibir el juego a todas las mujeres trans.

    El deporte debe provenir primero de un lugar de inclusión y luego encontrar las razones adecuadas para excluirlo si es necesario.

    Atentamente,

    William F. McManus

    Vicepresidente - Member Services

    Federation of Gay Games

  • 24 Aug 2020 18:37 | Anonymous

    The AIDS Memorial Quilt is an enormous memorial to celebrate the lives of people who have died of AIDS-related causes. Comprising 48,000 individual panels and weighing an estimated 54 tons, it is the largest piece of community folk art in the world as of 2020.


    The National AIDS Memorial has just announced, through a partnership with the AIDS Quilt Touch team, that all 48,000 panels of the AIDS Memorial Quilt may now be experienced via an interactive search tool. People anywhere in the world can experience the beauty of the Quilt and witness the love and stories stitched into each panel.

    To use this amazing new search tool, click HERE. For example, a search of Gay Games founder Tom Waddell turned up 12 individual panels featuring his name.


    If you need a guide to this tool, please see this pdf.

    The history of the Gay Games and the AIDS Memorial Quilt are closely intertwined. There are hundreds of Gay Games participants who are memorialized on these panels. Also, at every Gay Games, the International Rainbow Memorial Relay is held in their honor, and a partial selection of panels from the Quilt are displayed in a high-visibility space. As evidence, here are a few photos showing this from the previous three Gay Games events in 2010, 2014, and 2018.

      
    Gay Games X, Paris, France, 2018



    Gay Games IX, Cleveland, Ohio, 2014



    Gay Games VIII, Cologne, Germany, 2010

  • 20 Aug 2020 12:30 | Anonymous

    Reprinted from PinkNews

    A thousand miles lie between the start of the UK’s first-ever Tour de Trans and the finish line.


    Following one of the most iconic cycle routes in Britain, from Land’s End in Cornwall to John O’Groats in Scotland, the Tour de Trans will ride the entire length of the UK, from the southernmost to the northernmost tip. The event takes place between 13 - 25 August.

    The challenging route, known as LEJOG, is attempted by thousands of people each year. The latest people to set off from Land’s End are a non-binary person, Pateon McGuire, and their 17-year-old son, Callum.

    Billing their ride as the Tour de Trans, the duo are fundraising for trans-support charity Chrysalis and want to use the trip to raise awareness about the issues transgender people face, as well as promoting inclusivity in sport.


    To read the complete article, including profiles of several Tour de Trans participants, click HERE.

  • 20 Aug 2020 12:16 | Anonymous

    The following letter was sent on 17 August from Federation of Gay Games Vice President of Member Services to World Rugby regarding their proposed new anti- trans rules.


    17 August, 2020

    To the World Rugby Transgender Working Group,

    The Federation of Gay Games understands that World Rugby is proposing to ban all trans women from playing rugby in world level competitions.

    The Titanes Rugby Club in Chile first brought this matter to our attention, and we wish to firmly express our position as standing in support of trans inclusion, along with the wider global LGBTQ+ sporting community.

    The Federation of Gay Games’ guiding principles are “Participation, Inclusion and Personal Best.” These principles help us govern our day to day operations and having a proposal excluding trans women from women’s rugby teams goes against these principles.

    Your proposal does not contain sufficient evidence to promote a global blanket ban of all trans female players. Of course, there are differences between male and female bodies and their associated abilities, but this absolutely has to be considered on an individual basis.

    The comparisons made throughout your papers are based on assessments of “typical” people, which is totally insufficient and unfair to draw conclusions from at this level.

    It is good that the policy recognises the risks involved from an individual player's perspective, but this needs to go further still. For example, there needs to be careful consideration requiring a trans man to move straight into men's competition as soon as they start their transition.

    As much as this is a decision about rugby competitions at an elite global level, it will set an important precedent for all other world level governing bodies, and ultimately all your member unions will look to adopt this stance. That means that this policy has the very real potential to have a global impact at a participation level to ban trans women from playing, and this has to be recognised and considered appropriately.

    Therefore, we implore World Rugby Group to review their policy again and not to move forward with their proposal to ban all trans women from playing.

    Sport must come from a place of inclusion first, and then find appropriate reasons to exclude if necessary.

    Sincerely,

    William F. McManus

    Vice President-Member Services

    Federation of Gay Games

  • 19 Aug 2020 10:23 | Anonymous

    Make shopping your new cardio as you look forward to participating in Gay Games 11 2022 in Hong Kong.

                    

    Shop now at the the Official GGHK2022 online store for logo T-Shirts, Tank Tops, Towels in various sizes, and cool Rainbow Masks. More items will be coming soon to this store. Everything has been designed with love in-house, and shipping around the world is available.

    Click HERE to visit the store and start your shopping adventure.

    Special "Store Opening" introductory offer: Shipping will be free on all orders for T-Shirts and Tank Tops!

    Note: Due to CoViD-19, certain destinations may experience shipping delays or other disruptions. Please get the latest news and updates for your region before completing your order. Thank you for your understanding.

  • 03 Aug 2020 13:57 | Anonymous

    Press Release issued 3 August 2020

    The Gay Games is a global quadrennial sport and cultural event open to all. 

    Over the course of the nine day event the host city receives a boost to their economy with an injection of more than USD 100 million, and their LGBTQ+ population receives support with the presence of approximately 12,000 participants from around the world. 

    The cities moving forward in the 2026 Gay Games bid process are: 

    • Auckland, New Zealand
    • Brisbane, Australia
    • Guadalajara, Mexico
    • Munich, Germany
    • San Diego, USA
    • Taipei, Taiwan
    • Toronto, Canada
    • Valencia, Spain

    “This is a competitive and lengthy process, and we are grateful for all of the organizations’ hard work. The impact that the Gay Games has in host cities is incredible in terms of culture, sport, economic impact, history and most importantly furthering all matters of LGBTQ+ equality,” says David Killian, FGG Officer of Site Selection.

    Joanie Evans, FGG Co-President, adds, “I am very impressed with the number of cities who have bidded for the 2026 Gay Games. We are thrilled at both the scale and calibre of entries all vying to host our 2026 event.  In this time of worldwide ‘unpredictability’, I have more faith that our message of equality in sport and culture will continue to resonate around the world.” 

    “I’m excited to see the diversity of the locations of the bidding cities. To have representation from eight countries on four continents highlights the global impact of the Gay Games,” Sean Fitzgerald, FGG Co-President states.  

    Primary Bid Books are due on November 1, 2020.

    Gay Games 11 will take place November 11-19, 2022 in Hong Kong. The gay games is open to all who wish to participate and has no qualifying standards. Registration will open in Q2 of 2021. Visit https://gghk2022.com/en/ for more details.

  • 29 Jul 2020 10:49 | Anonymous

    JULY 25, 2020 — Equality Coaching Alliance, an online support network for LGBT+ sports coaches, administrators and staff, was founded nine years ago as an outreach initiative of the Federation of Gay Games. At the time, the founder, FGG volunteer Roger Brigham, a longtime wrestling coach and sports columnist for the Bay Area Reporter, knew less than a handful of LGBT coaches who were out at work.


    Today, the number of ECA members hit 1,000.

    Brigham formed the idea for the group while he was volunteering on the FGG’s external affairs committee. There were numerous LGBT+ sports-focused groups that had either just begun or were forming in 2011, but Brigham noticed none of the were specifically designed for the sports professional who were mainstays in the industry and best positioned to help change sports policies and internal culture.

    He reached out to former basketball coach Helen Carroll, who was director of the National Center for Lesbian Rights at the time, to discuss ideas for trying to connect coaches and set organizational goals. Brigham created the name, designed a logo, and launched a private group Facebook page, which remains the groups primary means of internal communications. ECA also has a public social media presence for more visibility and is in the process of launching a website.

    ECA launched on May 26, 2011 with three members. Within five days, the membership was at 13.

    “When Roger outlined this program, I was immediately excited,” Carroll said. “My hopes were to have a place where LGBTQ coaches who felt so isolated could meet each other and discuss their experiences, needs and of course, job difficulties and discrimination. Working for the NCLR, I felt it important for this group of talented coaches to understand there is a legal organization where they can go, pro bono, to seek legal help or a referral to an attorney that could help, advise or represent them in tricky job situations.”

    From the beginning, the membership gender balance has hovered at right around 50 percent.

    “Having equal gender representation was spoken of on Day One, and has been achieved in the very early days until now,” Carroll said. “I was a bit concerned that in the beginning there was not the representation of people of color as members and role models, but that changed quickly with several coaches stepping into the idea of ECA being the really first LGBT coaches organization working for equal representation of everyone. It appears this has happened. Voices must all be heard equally and leadership shared by all. Again, I see this happening  and always being improved.  Let’s keep working toward that and this group will continue to lead the way on the sports scene.”

    Several ECA members are not out professionally. ECA gives them a safe place to be themselves and get advice from peers whether they plan to come out or not.

    “I've noticed that coaches and sport professionals really appreciate a safe space to voice dialogue surrounding LGBTQ athletes while creating a diverse network around the world,” said Galen Dodd, a volleyball coach at Lewis University who has stepped up to lead the organization’s membership committee. “Many people we add have already shown themselves to be successful coaches or leaders in their industry. Joining ECA now gives them another tool in their toolbox to use.”

    As this story was being written, Charley Sullivan, an ECA member who coaches rowing at the University of Kansas, was conversing with another Division I head coach who is preparing to come out.

    “He could barely write the words five minutes ago, and now we’re talking about how dating works in public in the city where he lives and what he would do if one of his guys saw that. This is happening right now as I write this. We still have so few openly gay men coaching at the highest level. The barriers are so hard. ECA shows us that we’re not alone. Even if it’s just a series of posts we read daily in our Facebook feed.”

    Many members have been active in informing peers about ECA, but none has been more active and successful at introducing new members than UCLA softball coach Kirk Walker, one of the first coaches to join.

    “Recruitment of coaches and sports professionals begins with my reaching out to friends of ECA members on Facebook and introducing myself and the groups to them,” Walker said. “On a daily basis when I meet peers or sports professionals through my work with several sports organizations, I introduce them to ECA and encourage them to join if they are on Facebook.  We have seen substantial introductions in recent years from current ECA members bringing peers or friends forward and connecting me with them.”

    In recent months, ECA has developed a working relationships with GOSPACE, whose mission is focused on current and former LGBTQ student-athletes. Walker said the vast majority of ECA members were student-athletes before becoming sports professionals, so the cooperative relationship between ECA and GOSPACE provided mutual benefits, including the opportunity for athletes to get mentoring from coaches.

    Outsports has also begun running features on many ECA members and their stories.

    “With the partnership with Outsports, we now have more people that find out about ECA from the coming-out stories posted that now include mention of ECA in the footnotes,” Walker said.

    So far, ECA has existed as an informal network with no official structure or bylaws. Having reached a critical mass of members, it is now poised to organize more formally as a non-profit organization, seek funding, and increase its workshop, policy and educational activities. Committees have formed and have been holding regularly scheduled online video meetings.

    “There is great potential in the work coming out of the committees that could benefit from resources and funding in areas of education, internships, and forming a professional organization to influence hiring practices on campuses across the country,” Walker said. “The next major movement will be to solidify non-profit status.  We have enough work to need to hire some staff to manage committees and administrative development. This will also allow revenue streams to create a platform independent of Facebook. We have hundreds of other contacts that are not able to join or follow because they are not on Facebook.”

    People interested in ECA can visit the Equality Coaching Alliance Public Page on Facebook.

  • 30 Jun 2020 11:14 | Anonymous

    The fight for racial justice is hardly a new concept, as the struggle for basic equality for Black Americans has persisted for 400+ years. In fact, the Gay Games can trace its roots directly to this issue. 

    October 1968 was near the end of one of the most turbulent years in US history. Just a few months earlier, the country was rocked by the assassinations of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Presidential candidate Bobby Kennedy, riots outside the Democratic convention in Chicago, numerous demonstrations against the war in Vietnam, and growing unrest over centuries of discrimination against African-Americans. Just nine months later, the watershed Stonewall riots in New York City gave birth to the modern gay rights movement.

    October 18, 1968 was day six of the Summer Olympics, being held in Mexico City. That morning, two African-American sprinters – Tommie Smith and John Carlos – won gold and bronze medals in the 200 meter race. Australian Peter Norman won the silver medal.

    On their way to the medals podium, Smith and Carlos made a statement: first, they wore green and white buttons which said “Olympic Project for Civil Rights” (they also convinced silver medal-winner Peter Norman (a white Australian) to wear one of those buttons); second, they removed their shoes, wearing black socks to symbolize poverty; third, they wore beads and a scarf to protest lynchings which have historically plagued African-American males; and finally - and most significantly - they each wore a black glove on one hand. Once on the medals podium, they lowered their heads in defiance while the Star Spangled-Banner played and raised their black-gloved fists in a Black Power salute that rocked the world.


    Smith and Carlos were widely vilified for their actions, and shortly after the gesture, the U.S. Olympic Committee expelled them from the Olympic Village and sent them home. Even Peter Norman received widespread criticism by conservatives in the Australian media and he was left off the team for the 1972 Olympics

    Watching all of this drama unfold was 30-year old white US Olympic teammate, Tom Waddell, a decathlete. Later that week, Waddell placed sixth among the 33 competitors, achieving five personal bests among the ten events.


    Unlike many fellow members of the US Olympic team, Tom Waddell spoke openly in support of Tommie Smith and John Carlos. He said, “Black Americans have been discredited by the American flag more often than they have sullied it.”

    To those who knew Waddell, this was no surprise. He had always been a vocal supporter of social justice and in 1965 drove from Brooklyn to Selma, Alabama to participate in the Civil Rights Movement there. The next year, Waddell was drafted into the Army; he protested when he found out that he would be shipped to Vietnam. Expecting a court-martial, he was instead, unexpectedly, sent to train as a decathlete for the 1968 Olympics.

    Having a front-row seat for one of the most iconic and divisive sports events of the 20th Century had a profound impact on Tom Waddell. This experience led directly to his development of the Gay Olympics in 1982 (now called the Gay Games) whosse founding tenets are Partcipattion, Inclusion, Personal Best. Had it not been for being an eyewitness to those watershed events in Mexico City, it’s quite possible that the Gay Games would have never been created.

    At the Gay Games - where we continue to “Change The World” - we strongly believe that #BlackLivesMatter.

  • 24 Jun 2020 16:11 | Anonymous

    FGG Honorary Life Member Roger Brigham (he, him, his) of Oakland, California is well known within the Gay Games community. His contributions to the movement – as a professional sportswriter, Gay Games wrestler, coach, and Board member –are many over an extended period of time.

    In 2010 while serving on the FGG Board, Roger created the Equality Coaching Alliance (ECA). In honor of his many years of service, ECA has just published a lengthy interview with Roger. It makes for some really great reading.


    You may read the full interview with Roger Brigham HERE.

    Another of Roger’s many talents is as a chef. Anyone who has been to his home which he shares with his husband Eduardo has probably sampled some of Roger’s culinary delights. Despite being so busy with all of the activities listed above, Roger has found the time to write a most interesting cookbook. It is entitled “Recipes for Life and Other Disasters.” Many of the recipes are his interpretations of dishes one might find at a restaurant. And he’s proud to share with people some of the cuisine from Cuba and Puerto Rico, introduced to him by his husband Eduardo’s family. The book also contains many original recipes created by Roger in his home kitchen.


    An article about this new cookbook was just published on Outsports.com. Read all about it there. If you’re hungry for some great reading and great eating, you can purchase your own copy of the book HERE on Amazon.com.

  • 14 Jun 2020 15:53 | Anonymous

    A message of solidarity from the Federation of Gay Games during the Covid-19 pandemic and global Black Lives Matter movement.

    We want to take this moment to emphasize to our Members and followers that we join in solidarity with protestors over the historical and escalating epidemic of the death of Black people caused by police violence sparked by the murder of George Floyd at the hands of 4 police officers in Minneapolis.

    Throughout the world, it is communities of color who are suffering the most due to systemic white privilege, which has been further exacerbated by the Coronavirus pandemic.


    During Pride Month it’s necessary to recognize the daily struggles that Black LGBTQ+ communities in the United States and around the world are facing.

    Following the forcible removal of drag Queens and a call to action by a butch lesbian as she was being dragged away, it was a Black trans women who threw the first bricks and punches at the Stonewall riots, around this time in 1969, and it is important that the LGBTQ+ world remembers that.

    We stand with peaceful protests against oppression, racism and white supremacy.

    We vow to be not just non-racist but anti-racist in our approach and in our actions.

    We wish you safety and solidarity during these troubling times.  #solidarity #justiceforgeorgefloyd #equality #diversity #inclusion #pride #love #togetherwearestronger

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