News & Events

Commonwealth Games Federation Publishes First Human Rights Policy Statement

05 October 2017.

The Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) has adopted its first-ever human rights policy statement.

The Statement outlines the Commonwealth sports movement’s ambition and responsibility to champion human rights, with programmes, activities, and agreements with future host cities and partners aimed at promoting the protection and enjoyment of human rights. 

David Grevemberg, the chief executive of the CGF, noted. 

"This human rights statement represents the next step in the CGF’s commitment to embed human rights within our governance, management systems, development, events, fundraising and marketing.

The Statement notes that the CGF Governance and Integrity Committee will continue to evaluate human rights impacts as part of the process of reviewing the CGF's wider governance structure, including how such considerations impact CGF's work with global sponsor and broadcast partners.

The aim of this work is to publish a CGF Human Rights Policy and human rights Due Diligence Strategy ahead of the CGF General Assembly in March 2018 for ratification.


Key Provisions of the Statement include: 
  • It was approved in Colombo, Sri Lanka following a two-day meeting of the CGF Executive Board.
  • The CGF Pledge section states: "The CGF in its daily operations and relationships is committed to implementing the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (2011) and embraces the ILO Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work (1998). We recognise our responsibility to respect human rights and to provide or contribute towards access to effective remedy where adverse human rights impacts occur."
  • Affirms the expectations outlined also apply to its partners, including: Commonwealth Games Associations, the Local Organising Committees for the Commonwealth Games and Commonwealth Youth Games (the Games), commercial partners and suppliers, and others linked to the CGF through business relationships.
  • Notes that the CGF is mapping its business relationships to identify where CGF activities and those of its partner organisations might adversely impact people’s human rights and to prevent and mitigate the most salient risks, noting the principal relationships at present are with: the Commonwealth Games Associations, and the Games Local Organising Committees. 
  • Outlines CGF's commitment to follow international human rights standards in the face of conflicting national legal requirements. 
  • Highlights the steps it is taking to embed its commitments into its governance and culture, including working with Unicef UK to carry out a human rights gap analysis and revise existing policies and procedures, including of the Candidate City Manual and Host City Contracts.
  • It notes CGF has also published a revised Candidate City Manual, and consulted with human rights and transparency experts to strengthen its portfolio of bid-related documents.