Canadian Olympic Committee builds #OneTeam to stand up for LGBT youth, athletes, community

The Canadian Olympic Committee (COC) will introduce groundbreaking policies to protect and support LGBT athletes, youth, and coaches in sport and schools, it was announced today.

Following a partnership between LGBT organizations You Can Play, PrideHouse Toronto, Egale Canada Human Rights, and more than 25 Canadian Elite Athletes, the COC will update its anti-discrimination language within the COC Articles and introduce LGBT-specific educational resources for its national in-school program, which will be promoted across the country by Canadian athletes. They hope to reach as many as one million students by the end of 2016.

You Can Play, an organization working to secure LGBT equality in sports; Egale, Canada’s only national organization building LGBT equality through research, education, and community engagement; and the COC are also equipping Canadian professional athletes to serve as #OneTeam ambassadors, promoting mental fitness, self-esteem, and equality in sports to students nationwide and fans worldwide.

“The Canadian Olympic Committee is setting the standard for LGBT-inclusion in sports by leveling the playing field for all athletes,” said GLAAD President & CEO Sarah Kate Ellis. “By cementing its commitment to LGBT athletes and fans through new partnerships and critical resources, the COC is sending the message that supporting equality is the winning attitude.”

Just before announcing the list of LGBT-inclusive initiatives, You Can Play and Egale signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to ensure a lasting dedication to creating a sports culture in which all people can play to win.