The IOF Council approved in its meeting during WOC 2023 a revised IOF Transgender Policy for international events. The policy will be effective from 1 August 2023.
The revised policy is available here.
The IOF Transgender Policy Working Group has led the process towards the revised policy. A key necessity of the policy is to preserve the fairness of the female category. The revised policy has been developed based on the International Olympic Committee (IOC) framework on fairness, inclusion and non-discrimination on the basis of gender identity and sex variations, including both an open consultation round, consultation meetings with athletes and a second targeted consultation round with IOF Member Federations and IOF athlete representatives. New conditions for the female category in IOF events related to male puberty and a reduced threshold for concentration of testosterone in serum are in line with recently revised policies of other endurance sports under World Athletics and Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI).
The above-mentioned framework replaced in the end of 2021 the previous recommendations from the IOC, leaving each federation with the responsibility of finding the right policy for its sport(s), based on the most up-to-date medical and evidence-based knowledge. Sports have different physiological requirements and differences in policies might therefore be appropriate. As one of the recognized international sports federations by the IOC has required the IOF to review the IOF Transgender Policy, together with requests to the IOF from the membership,
In its meeting, Council also emphasized the importance of continuous monitoring of research and studies within sports to make sure the IOF Transgender Policy is in accordance with the best evidence-based knowledge available. Further to this, Council decided that the male category in international competitions should continue to be called “Men’s”, even though it is effectively an “Open” category without restrictions. National federations are free to call it “Open” at national level competitions and below if this is preferred.
The scope of the revised IOF Transgender Policy is IOF and partner events; international competitions from World Ranking Events to World Championships. The IOF has urged national federations to make independent assessments of the suitability of possible conditions related to this topic for their portfolio of events. It is not recommended to automatically adopt the IOF Transgender Policy for all competitions under national federations, but to carefully assess the balance between the different considerations and how inclusion can be safeguarded in a responsible manner.