Organisers confident Gay Games will be held in Hong Kong

The organisers of the Gay Games have released a statement saying they remain confident the event will go ahead in 2022 despite the current political unrest in the city.

130+ delegates, Honorary Life Members (HLMs), and observers of the international Federation of Gay Games (FGG) from 23 countries recently participated in the Annual General Assembly (AGA) in Guadalajara, Mexico from October 31 – November 2, 2019.

At the gathering the Hong Kong Team delivered two sessions to update members on the current state of planning for Gay Games 11. One presentation on the current situation in Hong Kong and the other outlining the progress of the Hong Kong team for the 2022 Gay Games.

“While we fully recognize the troubles in Hong Kong continue, the FGG Board and the attending members are leaving Mexico committed to the Gay Games in Hong Kong which will be a spectacular sports and cultural event that will kickstart and foster LGBTQ+ connections among our communities in the city and region.” the organisation said in a statement.

“This will be the largest LGBTQ+ sports and cultural event ever held in Asia. 12,000 participants, 36 sports, and 20+ cultural events will take place over 9 days in November, 2022.

Gene Dermody, a participant in all ten previous Gay Games, said he was looking forward to the event.

“Hong Kong is an opportunity to make a positive political statement by doing something that is fun and non-threatening and which can change peoples’ perspectives of what it means to be LGBTQ+,” Dermody said.

Hong Kong beat Mexico’s Guadalajara and Washington DC to host the 11th edition of the event. The event is expected to bring in an additional one billion HK dollars to the local economy.

Organisers argued that bring the event to Hong Kong would tackle the stigma and cultural barriers faced by LGBT groups across the region.

The Gay Games was founded by former Olympic decathlete Tom Waddell and first held in San Francisco in 1982. Last year the event was held in Paris featuring 36 sports, from mountain biking to fencing and athletics.

Hong Kong has seen ongoing demonstrations against proposed laws that would have allowed people accused of serious crimes being moved from the city to mainland China. While that proposal has been withdrawn, the demonstrations have grown to include a wide range of pro-democracy demands.

OIP Staff