NGLCC Urges Safety Before Commerce Ahead of 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics

A Statement from the National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce

Washington, D.C. (08/15/13) The National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC) is warning corporations worldwide sponsoring the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the Olympic Games of the ramifications of violence against lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) athletes and attendees at the upcoming 2014 Sochi Winter Olympic Games in Russia. The organization is urging sponsors of the Games to use their considerable influence to push the IOC to ensure the safety of LGBT athletes and spectators.

The NGLCC is drafting a sign-on letter to send to the IOC and the Worldwide Top Partners to request clear assurances for LGBT safety at the upcoming Sochi Olympic Games and an amendment to the IOC charter that includes Olympic host countries be evaluated on human rights inclusive of LGBT people as it does for other marginalized communities. NGLCC is requesting current and potential sponsors and corporate partners of the Games add their name to the letter. To aid in this process, the NGLCC is planning a series of meetings and conference calls to educate and engage with corporations in a dialogue on actions that can be taken to help mitigate the situation, including signing on to the letter and urging the IOC to act.
As the largest LGBT business advocacy organization in the world, NGLCC believes Russia’s recent anti-LGBT propaganda laws and the correlated uptick in violence against LGBT citizens pose a substantial threat to public safety, to the integrity of the Games, and to the brand of sponsors of the Games if a clear statement about safety is not made. 
NGLCC is encouraging the IOC’s Worldwide Top Partners, which includes U.S.-based Coca-Cola, McDonalds, GE, Dow, and Visa in addition to the Games broadcast partner and NGLCC corporate partner NBCUniversal, to insist on the safety of all participants, especially LGBT athletes, given recent events in Russia. Harm to any athlete is inexcusable and destructive to the tradition of the Olympics and all who support them and our LGBT Olympians.
NGLCC looks forward to working with all parties to ensure the safety of LGBT participants and spectators in Sochi and beyond. 
Join our petition and tell organizers: Safety Before Commerce in Sochi!
CONTACT: Laura Berry, Communications Director, at 1-202-234-9181 or
About the NGLCC
The National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC) is the only national not-for-profit advocacy organization dedicated to expanding the economic opportunities and advancements of LGBT business community. With more than 29,000 members, 140 corporate partners, and 52 local, state, and international affiliate chambers, NGLCC is the largest LGBT business development and economic advocacy organization in the world. 

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