The International Committee of Sports for the Deaf, Inc. (ICSD) was founded as Comité International des Sports Silencieux (CISS) in Paris, France on the 24th of August 1924 at a meeting of Deaf sports leaders from Belgium, Czechoslovakia, France, Great Britain, Holland, Hungary, Italy, Poland and Romania. At this inaugural meeting, Mr. Eugène Rubens-Alcais of France was appointed the first President and Mr. Antoine Dresse was selected the founding General Secretary.
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) at its 50th session in Paris from the 9th until the 19th of June 1955 resolved to admit the organization as an International Federation with Olympic standing.
In 1966 the IOC awarded the Coubertin Cup to the organisation in recognition of its strict adherence to the Olympic ideal and its service to international sport.
Since 1985, the flag of International Olympic Committee has flown next to those of the ICSD at the Summer and Winter Deaflympics.
On 16 May 2001, the IOC granted permission to replace Deaf World Games with Deaflympics.
To celebrate the spirit of Deaf Sports where Deaf athletes come together as members of a cultural and linguistic minority to strive to reach the pinnacle of competition, the ICSD adopted a motto: PER LUDOS AEQUALITAS (Equality through sport).
The organization’s mission in its constitution shall be in accordance with the United Nations' Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, specifically:
- Article 5 (Equality and non-discrimination) where specific measures which are necessary to accelerate or achieve de facto equality of persons with disabilities shall not be considered discrimination under the terms of the present Convention;
- Article 30 (Participation in cultural life, recreation, leisure and sport) where persons with disabilities shall be entitled and empowered, on equal basis with others, to recognition and support of their specific cultural and linguistic identity, including sign language and deaf culture. In addition, countries shall take appropriate measures to ensure that persons with disabilities have opportunity to organize, develop and participate in disability-specific sporting and recreational activities and, to this end, encourage the provision, on an equal basis with others, of appropriate instruction, training and resources.
Definitions and Interpretations
The words in the first column of the Table contained below shall bear the meaning set opposite to them in the second column, if not inconsistent with the context:
|Associate Members||A member of the ICSD having the rights and obligations referred to in these Articles.|
|Athlete||A sports person with a hearing loss of 55 dB or greater in the better ear.|
|CISS||Comité International des Sports des Sourds, the original French name of ICSD.|
|Congress||A meeting of all Full and Associate Members as referred to in these Articles.|
|Deaf Person||A person with a hearing loss.|
|Deaf Sports||Any sports in which Deaf Persons participate.|
|Deaf World Championships||A single sport competition.|
|Executive Committee||Members of the Executive of the ICSD referred to in these Articles.|
|Founding Member||A national deaf sports federation, which was present at the inaugural Congress.|
|Full Member||A member of the ICSD having the rights and obligations referred to in these Articles.|
|Honorary Life Member||A member of the ICSD by virtue of these Articles.|
|ICSD||International Committee of Sports for the Deaf, the world body organization responsible for all aspects of sports for deaf people.|
|ICSD-sanctioned Competition||A competition approved by ICSD, whose organization is not the responsibility of the ICSD.|
|National Federation||A national deaf sports federation afforded membership by virtue of these Articles.|
|Objects||The Objects of the ICSD referred to in these Articles.|
|Provisional Member||A temporary member of the ICSD having the rights and obligations referred to in these Articles.|
|Regional Confederations||A group of ten or more Full Members, which are geographically situated and have formed themselves into a Regional Confederation, which is recognised by the ICSD.|
|Regional Championships||A competition opens to all athletes residing within a Regional Confederation.|
|Summer/Winter Deaflympics||A multi-sport competition of ICSD.|
In this Constitution, unless it is inconsistent with the context:
words importing the singular include the plural and vice versa;
words denoting any gender shall include both genders;
headings are for convenience only and shall not affect Interpretation; and
references to any party shall include the party's successors and permitted assigns.
1.1 The name of the incorporated organisation shall be the International Committee of Sports for the Deaf (ICSD), also known as Comité International des Sports des Sourds (CISS).
1.2 The ICSD is subject to the law of the country of its incorporation or registration.
1.3 The ICSD shall consist of:
1.3.1 Full Members which control Deaf Sports in their respective countries and which are affiliated to and recognized by the ICSD;
1.3.2 Provisional Members with temporary status in their respective countries until they fulfill certain requirements by the ICSD;
1.3.3 Associate Members consisting of International Deaf Sports Federations, and
1.3.4 Honorary Life Members who have rendered meritorious services to the ICSD.
The objects of the ICSD are as follows:
2.1 to be the only worldwide Deaf multi-sports representative organization.
2.2 to develop and to promote sport training and competition in the Deaf international sporting community.
2.3 to develop new training programs and expand existing opportunities for Deaf persons to participate in sports at international standards.
2.4 to award, supervise and assist in the coordination of the Summer and Winter Deaflympics.
2.5 to promote the organisation and development of Deaf sports in developing countries.
2.6 where the sport is recognized by the ICSD, to sanction and where appropriate, to assist in:
2.6.1 the coordination and supervision of the Deaf World Championships and Deaflympics as the sole international organization with the right to do so.
2.6.2 the promotion of the Deaf Regional Championships and Competitions.
2.6.3 the collaboration and organization of sport events of other international Deaf Sport Federations.
2.7 to liaise with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and SportAccord, (also known as General Association of International Sport Federations (GAISF)) in pursuance of these objectives.
2.8 to harmonise relations between countries by providing a means whereby ideas affecting Deaf Sports can be exchanged.
2.9 to liaise and/or co-operate with, or lobby any relevant government or other organisations on behalf of Deaf people participating in sport.
2.10 to coordinate the calendar of international and regional sporting events.
2.11 to promote sports for Deaf athletes without discrimination for political, religious, economic, racial, gender, disability or sexual orientation reasons.
2.12 to do all things necessary or convenient to achieve or further any of these objectives.
The powers of the ICSD include:
3.1 to regulate and, if necessary, monitor the operations of all members.
3.2 to provide facilities for settlement of disputes, discipline of misconduct and for breach of this Constitution or any other bylaws of this Constitution.
3.3 to control and invest the funds of the ICSD in such manner as shall be decided from time to time.
3.4 to borrow, raise or secure the payment of monies and to lend money or give credit to any person or body of persons in such manner as the ICSD may decide.
3.5 to purchase, transfer, sell, assign, mortgage, lease, hire or exchange land, equipment, plant, furnishing or any other property whatever, and in any manner authorised by law, to improve, levy and collect annual membership fees and other charges upon or from its members.
3.6 to acquire and hold any estate or interest in any property whatsoever.
3.7 to raise money and acquire such assets necessary to carry out the above and to obtain such permits as may be necessary for that purpose.
3.8 to do all things necessary for or incidental to the pursuit of the Objects.
4. Categories of Membership
There shall be five (5) categories of members: Full Members, Provisional Members, Regional Confederations, Associate Members and Honorary Life Members.
4.1 Full Members
4.1.1 A Full Member shall consist of a national deaf sports federation, which was either present as a Founding Member at the inaugural Congress or was admitted for full membership by the Congress in accordance with Article 4.1.2.
4.1.2 A national deaf sports federation may apply for Full Membership if it is:
22.214.171.124 a registered or recognised self-governing organisation of deaf sports in its country having a deaf president and a majority of deaf members holding executive positions;
126.96.36.199 certified or is otherwise accepted by the National Olympic Committee in that country or, if there is no such body, the national governing body for sports in that country as the sole or a representative national organisation of deaf sports in that country; and is
188.8.131.52 incorporated or has a constitution with appropriate aims, objects and purposes consistent with the intent and spirit of this Constitution, which shall be reviewed each time changes are made.
4.1.3 Nomination of a national deaf sports federation for membership of the ICSD:
184.108.40.206 shall be made in writing in the form set out in Appendix 1; and
220.127.116.11 shall be lodged with the Executive Director of ICSD.
18.104.22.168 The Executive Director shall, as soon as is practicable after the receipt of a nomination referred to in Article 22.214.171.124, refer the nomination to the Legal Commission of ICSD. The Legal Commission shall, in consultation with the Executive Committee, report to the Congress, which may admit the federation in accordance with Article 5.
4.2 Provisional Members
This membership will be given to those countries that fulfill the requirements pointed out in the previous articles of full right and for their characteristics regarding their population level, their competitive level and their formation process. They are recognized by their enrollment to the fitting regional confederations to help with their evolution and development within a five-year period to be recognized with full rights.
4.2.1 Those appointed countries could participate in events organized and guaranteed by the ISCD during their continuance in promotion to help with the development of the regional confederations in the Asia/Pacific, Africa, Europe and Pan America countries.
4.3 Regional Confederations
4.3.1 The following regional confederations are recognised by ICSD:
- Asia/Pacific (APDSC)
- Africa (CADS)
- Europe (EDSO)
- Pan America (PANAMDES)
provided their statutes comply with the conditions in 4.3.2
4.3.2 The Constitution of Regional Confederations must be reviewed by the EC to ensure that it is not in conflict with that of ICSD. Any change must be submitted to ICSD for approval.
4.3.3 ICSD Sanction of Championships
Regional Confederations must, before announcing dates and place for Championships, seek sanction by ICSD. The ICSD sanction shall include the following approvals:
- Dates for the Championships.
- Competition programmes.
- Doping control organization.
- Any modifications of the ICSD rules and requirements.
The approval shall include the conditions and requirements in accordance with the ICSD Rules and Regulations. All competitors must comply with ICSD eligibility rules.
4.4 Associate Members
4.4.1 An Associate Member shall consist of an international deaf sports federation responsible only for the technical aspect of one (1) sport and shall be in pursuance with the objects and principles of relevant SportAccord recognised international sports bodies with aims, objects and purposes consistent with this Constitution. Athletes shall first become members of a national deaf sports federation prior to participating in events organized by international deaf sports federations.
4.4.2 Nomination of an international deaf sports federation for associate membership of the ICSD:
126.96.36.199 shall be made in writing in the form set out in Appendix 2; and
188.8.131.52 shall be lodged with the Executive Director of ICSD.
184.108.40.206 The Executive Director shall, as soon as is practicable after the receipt of a nomination referred to in Article 220.127.116.11, refer the nomination to the Legal Commission of ICSD. The Legal Commission shall, in consultation with the Executive Committee, report to the Congress which may admit the association in accordance with Article 5.
4.5 Honorary Members
4.5.1 Subject to ratification at the next following Congress, Honorary Life Membership may be conferred by the Executive Committee on any person whom the Executive Committee and/or Full Members wish to acknowledge as having rendered meritorious services to ICSD.
5. Admission to Membership
5.1 The Congress may admit a national federation to Full Membership after reviewing the report of the Legal Commission of ICSD as to the Legal Commission's degree of satisfaction with the constitution or documents of incorporation, and qualifications of the national federation.
5.2 The admission of Associate Members shall be determined by the Legal Commission of ICSD. Any such decision shall be submitted for ratification at the next Congress.
5.3 Only one (1) national federation per country may be admitted by the ICSD as a Full Member.
5.4 Admission to membership of the ICSD shall be subject to the payment of the annual membership fee.
6. Rights and Obligations of Members
6.1 Full Members
6.1.1 Full members of the ICSD shall have the right, subject to this Constitution, the bylaws and decisions of the ICSD to:
18.104.22.168 enter their athletes in any World Championships, ICSD-sanctioned competitions and official ICSD competitions sanctioned by the ICSD;
22.214.171.124 submit proposals and vote at meetings of the Congress at which they are present;
126.96.36.199 nominate persons from their national federations for committees of the ICSD; and
188.8.131.52 participate in all competitions, events and activities of the ICSD.
6.1.2 Full Members shall pay the annual membership fee as levied by ICSD by April 1st of the calendar year. Interest shall be due and payable at two percent (2%) per month for late payments after April. The interest is calculated based on the original balance. All other levies and fees shall be payable within 60 days of their imposition.
6.1.3 A Full member shall only be permitted to exercise its rights pursuant to Article 6.1.1 if all of the following conditions are met:
184.108.40.206 the annual membership fee and all outstanding levies and debts to the ICSD have been paid and received by the ICSD.
220.127.116.11 all outstanding fees, levies and debts to any regional confederation have been paid and received by the regional confederation.
6.2 Associate Members
6.2.1 Associate Members shall have neither voting nor nominating rights, but may submit proposals and participate in discussions at the Congress.
6.2.2 Associate Members shall pay the annual membership fee as levied by ICSD by April 1st of the calendar year. Interest shall be due and payable at two percent (2%) per month for late payments after April. The interest is calculated based on the original balance. All other levies and fees shall be payable within 60 days of their imposition.
6.3 Obligations of Members
6.3.1 All members shall have the same goals as ICSD.
6.3.2 All members, excluding honorary life members, shall abide by ICSD eligibility, anti-doping and audiological rules in all competitions.
7. Suspension and Termination of Membership
7.1 A member may be suspended or terminated by the Congress on the recommendation of the Executive Committee of the ICSD.
7.1.1 A member from any category of membership may be suspended for a period or for life for:
18.104.22.168 breach of the terms of this Constitution and Deaflympics regulations;
22.214.171.124 non-payment or non-renewal of the annual membership fee by October 1st of the calendar year or any other levy; or
126.96.36.199 dishonourable conduct or bringing Deaf Sports into disrepute.
7.2 A member under suspension loses all rights and privileges of membership. In particular, a suspended member shall not be entitled to attend or vote at the Congress and may not be allowed to enter athletes in any events or activities organised or sanctioned by the ICSD and its regional confederations.
7.3 The Executive Director may terminate a membership by removing the member from the Register of Members on the advice of Congress upon a review by the Executive Committee.
7.4 A suspended member may be re-admitted, when the reason(s) for suspension has been resolved satisfactorily, by applying for re-admission to the Executive Director.
8. Resignation of Membership
8.1 A Full Member or Associate Member may resign [upon payment of all monies owing to ICSD] from the ICSD for reason of:
8.1.1 the Full Member is no longer recognised by their national government or the National Olympic Committee as a national body with responsibility for Deaf Sports;
8.1.2 the Associate Member is no longer accepted by its members as an international body with responsibility for the sport it represents, and
8.1.3 any other reason a Member deems appropriate.
8.2 The resignation must be made in writing to the Executive Director, giving at least three (3) months' notice, or such shorter notice as the Executive Director may determine.
8.3 The Executive Director may remove the member from the Register of Members on the advice of the Executive Committee upon a resignation under this Article.
8.4 After four (4) years of continuous activity suspension due to lack of annual membership fee payment, a Member is automatically subject to removal from its affiliation in the ICSD.
9. Structure and Responsibilities of the ICSD
The ICSD shall consist of the Congress, Extraordinary Congress, Executive Committee and the Executive Team.
9.1.1 The Congress is a meeting of all Full Members and shall be called at least every two (2) years.
9.1.2 The Congress shall be held within one (1) week prior to the commencement of the summer or winter program of the Deaflympics.
188.8.131.52 A Congress shall have a quorum when at least fifty percent of Full Members in good standing are present.
184.108.40.206 There shall be at least 50% representation from no less than two (2) Regional Confederations before the Congress can proceed.
220.127.116.11 In event of lack of quorum, the Congress shall proceed without voting on proposals.
9.1.4 Full Members shall have one (1) vote and may be represented by a maximum of three (3) delegates.
9.1.5 Associate members may be represented by two (2) persons who are not entitled to vote or to nominate, and may participate in discussions at the Congress.
9.1.6 Delegates shall be able to communicate in international signs.
9.1.7 The responsibilities and powers of Congress include:
18.104.22.168 to act as the supreme governing body of the ICSD;
22.214.171.124 to determine the direction for the development of Deaf sports at international standards;
126.96.36.199 to elect the Executive Committee of the ICSD, with the exception of the Regional Representatives;
188.8.131.52 to consider and approve the annual financial statements of the ICSD;
184.108.40.206 to consider and approve the rules of procedure for the election of the office bearers;
220.127.116.11 to consider motions from Full Members, the Executive Committee and any other Committees of ICSD. Such motions shall:
18.104.22.168.1 be submitted in writing to the Secretariat of the ICSD not less than four (4) months (unless waived by the Executive Committee in its absolute discretion) before the month in which Congress is due to meet and
22.214.171.124.2 except for amendments to the Constitution, be decided by a simple majority of Full Members present and voting.
126.96.36.199 to approve the international Deaf Sports calendar as proposed by the Executive Committee;
188.8.131.52 to consider and approve the annual membership and participation fees;
184.108.40.206 to approve any change in the country of location of ICSD Secretariat; and
220.127.116.11 to exercise any other incidental powers necessary for the Congress to carry out its responsibilities pursuant to this Constitution.
9.2 Extraordinary Congress of the ICSD
9.2.1 The Extraordinary Congress of the ICSD of all Full Members is requisitioned either by the Executive Committee of the ICSD or upon request of at least one-third (1/3) of Full Members from at least two (2) Regional Confederations, only to discuss specific topics.
9.2.2 A requisition for an Extraordinary Congress shall:
18.104.22.168 state the reasons for the requisition;
22.214.171.124 state the date of the proposed Extraordinary Congress (which must be within three (3) months after the date on which the requisition is set);
126.96.36.199 be signed by the President of the ICSD or all of the Full Members making the request for the Extraordinary Congress, as the case requires; and
188.8.131.52 be sent by the Executive Director to the address of each Full Member not less than two (2) months before the date of the proposed Extraordinary Congress.
9.3 Executive Committee of the ICSD
9.3.1 The Executive Committee of the ICSD shall consist of the following office bearers:
184.108.40.206 one (1) President;
220.127.116.11 one (1) Vice President - World Sports;
18.104.22.168 one (1) Vice President - World Youth Sports;
22.214.171.124 two (2) members-at-large; and
126.96.36.199 the President or his appointee from each Regional Confederation in a non-voting capacity.
9.3.2 All members of the Executive Committee must be a Deaf person fluent in international signs.
9.3.3 The Executive Committee shall consist of persons who are members of the National Federation of their country of residence admitted to Full Membership by virtue of this Constitution.
9.3.4 Only one (1) member from a National Federation shall be eligible to be elected to the Executive Committee.
9.3.5 Elected members of the Executive Committee may not serve as officers of Regional Confederations and vice versa.
9.3.6 The elected members of the Executive Committee shall be elected for a term of four (4) years commencing at the Congress held prior to the program of the Summer Deaflympics.
9.3.7 The Executive Committee shall hold at least one (1) meeting per year.
9.3.8 The Executive Committee shall have the following responsibilities and powers:
188.8.131.52 to implement policies as agreed upon by the Congress;
184.108.40.206 to consider and make recommendations on all motions, proposals and amendments as submitted by the Legal Commission;
220.127.116.11 to formulate and approve rules of procedure and bylaws in accordance with the Constitution;
18.104.22.168 to forward to all Members details (including the date and venue) of the next following Congress not less than six (6) months prior to the date of the proposed Congress;
22.214.171.124 to determine and dispatch to all Members the agenda with all materials for the Congress not later than two (2) months prior to the date of the proposed Congress;
126.96.36.199 to approve the calendar of international and regional sporting events for submission to the Congress;
188.8.131.52 to apprise the President of the ICSD when liaising with other international sports organisations, as well as other bodies as may be necessary to achieve or further any Objects of the ICSD;
184.108.40.206 to make payment to persons who are engaged by the Executive Committee to perform tasks at its direction;
220.127.116.11 to establish such ad hoc committees as it may deem necessary for the carrying out of its duties;
18.104.22.168 to exercise any other incidental powers necessary for the Executive Committee to carry out its responsibilities pursuant to this Constitution; and
22.214.171.124 to fill any vacancies until the next Congress.
9.4 Executive Team of the ICSD
9.4.1 The Executive Team of the ICSD shall consist of the following office bearers:
126.96.36.199 President; and
188.8.131.52 Vice President - World Sports.
9.4.2 The Executive Team shall hold at least two (2) meetings per year.
9.4.3 The Executive Team shall have the following responsibilities and powers:
184.108.40.206 to approve the number and conditions of employment of the Secretariat; and
220.127.116.11 to exercise any other incidental powers necessary for the Executive Team to carry out its responsibilities pursuant to this Constitution.
10.1.1 Resolutions involving the termination of membership under Article 7 or an amendment to this Constitution shall require a seventy five percent majority of votes of Members present and voting at the Congress or Extraordinary Congress.
10.1.2 All other resolutions, including the admission of national federations and the amendment of rules and regulations shall be determined by a simple majority of votes of Members present and voting at the Congress or Extraordinary Congress.
10.1.3 Voting by proxy shall not be permitted.
10.1.4 The procedures for voting and elections shall be prescribed in the bylaws.
11.1 The Executive Committee may establish any of the following Commissions, which shall be responsible to the Congress:
11.1.1 Anti-Doping Commission
11.1.2 Appeals Commission
11.1.3 Athletes Commission
11.1.4 Audiological Commission
11.1.5 Finance and Sponsorship Commission
11.1.6 Legal Commission
11.1.7 Medical Commission
11.1.8 Recognition Commission
11.1.9 Regional Confederations Commission
11.1.10 Technical Commission
11.1.11 Such additional commissions as the Executive Committee may deem necessary
11.2 The Executive Committee shall have the right to appoint members for any Commission.
11.3 The majority of the Commission members shall be deaf.
11.4 Copies of all minutes of meetings and records shall be forwarded to the Executive Director as soon as is practicable.
11.5 Each Commission shall at the completion of every calendar year furnish to the Executive Committee a report detailing the year's activities.
12.1 The Funds of the ICSD consist of:
12.1.1 annual membership fees of Members and any levies; and
12.1.2 such contributions, donations, sponsorships, government grants and other income as may be received for use by or in connection with the ICSD.
12.2 Subject to any resolution of the Congress, the Funds are to be used in pursuance of the Objects of the ICSD in such manner as the Executive Committee determines.
12.3 No portion of the Funds is to be distributed directly or indirectly to any person except as a bona fide compensation for services rendered or expenses incurred on behalf of the ICSD.
12.4 Financial Statements
12.4.1 The calendar year of the ICSD shall be from 1 January to 31 December of each year.
12.4.2 At the close of each calendar year the Executive Director shall prepare statements of income and expenditure and assets and liabilities of the ICSD. Such statements shall be presented to each Congress for adoption, after being audited by a chartered accountant qualified in audits.
13.1 International Signs shall be the primary communication means.
13.2 Written English shall be the official language of the ICSD.
13.3 Each Member is responsible for its own translations from English.
13.4 ICSD publications shall be printed in English.
13.5 As deemed necessary, ICSD shall provide for the Congress simultaneous translation in spoken English.
13.6 In the event of any differences in the interpretation of any text, the English version shall prevail.
14. Dispute Resolution
If any dispute arises concerning the construction of this Constitution or any matter arising from it and any disciplinary matters, then such dispute shall solely and exclusively be resolved by the Congress. The decision of the Congress will be final and binding on the parties and it is agreed that neither party will institute or maintain proceedings in any court or tribunal beyond the Congress.
15.1 The ICSD shall be dissolved in the event of the number of Full Members falling below 25 from at least 3 Regional Confederations or upon the vote of seventy five percent of the majority of Full Members present and entitled to vote at an Extraordinary Congress convened for that purpose and of which notice incorporating this proposed dissolution is given in accordance with this Constitution.
15.2 Upon dissolution, the assets and all profits, if any, after payment of all expenses and liabilities shall be conveyed to the World Federation of the Deaf or any other organisation having similar objects, such choice to be decided upon the vote of a simple majority of the members at the Extraordinary Congress.
16. Bylaws, Rules, and Regulations
ICSD may from time to time make bylaws, rules and regulations for the conduct of the ICSD. The bylaws shall be set out in an appendix to this Constitution.
17. Liabilities of Full Members
The liability of a Full Member to contribute towards the payment of debts and liabilities of the federation or the costs, charges and expenses of the winding up of the ICSD is limited to the amount, if any, unpaid by the Full Member in respect of membership of the ICSD as required by Article 6.1.2.
The application form - Become a full member or an associate member by filling out the application form.
Approved at the 42nd ICSD Congress – September 2009 in Taipei, Chinese Taipei