Human rights grievance and remedy mechanism
Initiative description: Providing grievance and remedy mechanisms for participants, attendees, human rights defenders, media representatives and community members who feel that their rights are adversely impacted by FIFA World Cup 2022™-related activities. Such mechanisms follow guidance from the effectiveness criteria of UN Guiding Principle 31.
This initiative includes:
Ensuring that rights holders at risk of being adversely impacted are aware of the mechanisms and related avenues for complaints
Engaging with the relevant stakeholders and those affected to assess complaints
Striving to use our leverage with any third parties involved to prevent, mitigate or remedy adverse impacts
Seeking cooperation with other institutions and organisations with a relevant mandate that may help to effectively address and remediate specific cases
Striving to address complaints in adequate ways, placing the highest priority on the safety and wellbeing of everyone involved and recognising the need for context-specific and timely solutions
Reporting on the mechanisms’ performance
FIFA and Q22 have developed FIFA’s first event-related human rights grievance mechanism applicable for anyone who would like to raise a human rights concern associated with the FIFA World Cup 2022™. This grievance mechanism complements other existing mechanisms operated by the tournament organisers, such as the SC’s Grievance Hotline for FIFA World Cup 2022™ workers, the FIFA grievance mechanism for human rights defenders and media representatives, and internal reporting mechanisms for staff at FIFA, Q22 and the SC.
The initial version of the FIFA World Cup 2022™ grievance mechanism was launched in October 2021. It provides a secure reporting and communication channel and allows for anonymous reporting. Reports received through the mechanism are in first instance assessed by an external expert who recommends adequate follow up measures by FIFA, Q22 and, where applicable and with the consent of the complainant, with third parties.
The grievance mechanism procedures build on a study of existing routes to remedy mandated by FIFA in 2019, as well as a right holder expectations study mandated by Q22 in 2021. Both studies were carried out by human rights specialist organisations.
An important partner in addressing grievances related to Qatari authorities is the Qatar National Human Rights Committee (NHRC). During the next few months, FIFA, Q22 and the SC will leverage the Memorandum of Understanding with the NHRC to formalise and help further strengthen respective procedures.
Human Rights Volunteers programme
A Human Rights Volunteers project was piloted during the FIFA Arab Cup 2021™. A team of ten volunteers were trained by human rights experts and fan representative organisations. Their role was to engage with spectators in order to help identify any tournament related risks or issues that may affect their rights.
More than 550 interviews were conducted on site during 29 of the 32 FIFA Arab Cup 2021™ matches. The volunteers also observed potential risks to fans and others in the stadium as well as trends on social media. Volunteer findings were assessed by a human rights specialist, immediate action was taken on site where practicable and appropriate, and other issues where communicated to the tournament organisers for follow as needed.
Findings are now helping to improve FIFA World Cup™ policies and procedures. In addition, after very positive stakeholder feedback, a larger programme will be rolled out during the FIFA World Cup 2022™.
“We are pleased to contribute towards training and supporting human rights volunteers at the FIFA World Cup, and developing a case study that will be of value to future event organisers across many sports. Having a cohort of volunteers with human rights training engage with fans, workers and security staff around a stadium is a model to promote more broadly, and it will further build and diversify the community of people engaged in sport and human rights.”