35th CISS Congress Minutes - Copenhagen 1997


12-13 July 1997 at the SAS Radisson Royal Hotel

Welcome was made by Mr. Stig Karup-Pedersen, the Danish Sports Association president who said that he was very pleased that the 18th World Games for the Deaf was held while the DDI was celebrating its 75th anniversary of its existence.

The Congress had two minutes of silence in memory of the CISS officers who have passed away since 1995; Henny de Haas (NED) Gert Baden (DEN) Valery Korablinov (RUS) Dermot Saunders (IRL) Felix Abraham (HUN) Drago Vukotic (YUG)

As well as the delegates, there were guests as well: Jerald M. Jordan (former CISS President ), Janne Lundeberg (Gestuno interpreter), Rafael Pinchas (writer for CISS Bulletin), Lisa Kauppinen (WFD President) and Asger Bergman (WFD board member)

Roll Call conducted by Knud Sondergaard revealed that there were 57 national delegations in attendance (114 votes).

John Lovett welcomed Lissa Kauppinen to give a short speech as WFD president. There are 70 million deaf people in the world. It is extremely important to have a solid working relationship among the deaf in different countries, especially in developing countries in the southern hemisphere. On her travels, she meets lots of deaf people especially young children who are very good in sports and makes appropriate referrals to CISS Secretariat. She wished CISS a great stride in its endeavors in strengthening the objectives of CISS.

The minutes of the 34th Congress, held in Helsinki, Finland in 1995 were approved.

New Members

The Congress approved applications of seven countries for admission as the CISS members:

  • Formerly Yugoslavia Republic of Macedonia (F.Y.R.A.M.)
  • Macau
  • Mongolia
  • Swaziland
  • Uganda
  • Uzbekistan
  • Yugoslavia

Now, the CISS family totals 72 countries.

John Lovett stated his aspiration that as the President, he hopes CISS will have 100 members by 2001 in Rome. Thailand must now apply as a deaf sports organization, not as a social organization in order to be eligible for full membership.

Suspension of Members
After a discussion, it was agreed that the Executive will now review the financial situation of countries who have not fulfilled their financial obligations. The Executive will assume responsibility in obtaining details before making decisions whether to suspend or terminate memberships.

CISS Report 1995/97
John Lovett presented the CISS Report from January 1995-December 1996, which then was unanimously approved.

Reports from Regional Confederations
Presidents from each Regional Confederations - Lennart Edwall from the EDSO, Kuo-tang Chou, of the APDSC, and Lawrence Flesicher of the PANAMDES all gave verbal reports of activities within their respective Confederations

Financial Reports
There were some questions regarding Financial Estimates (Budgets) for 1998 and 1999.

Motions Submitted by EC and Members Statutes
1. Executive Committee, to postpone motions relating to amendment of CISS statutes until 1999 in Davos. It was approved to postpone changes to the statutes with an exception of the list of officers for the CISS.

2. Germany's proposal that the new Executive Committee be comprised of: (approved)

  • President
  • Vice president
  • Secretary-General
  • Treasurer
  • Members for special tasks
  • One from each regional confederation

Regional Confederations
3. Germany proposed authorizations by regions. The regional confederations to be responsible for authorizations of all international events within their respective confederations - approved.

World Games Programs
New sport/events
4. Canada proposed that Kandahar be accepted as new sport in the World Winter Games program - to be a demonstration sport in 2003.

5. Canada recommended that Beach Volleyball be installed as a new sport in World Games - it was agreed after a short discussion that this sport be a demonstration sport at the 2005 World Games for the Deaf.

6. Switzerland proposed that the snowboarding be listed as a demonstration sport at its World Winter Games in Davos, 1999.

7. Switzerland proposed to allow entry of 6 men and 6 women in all disciplines in alpine skiing- it was decided to follow the Olympic regulations and FIS as well, where 6 names can be made but only four of these names can compete.


8. Switzerland asked for permission to admit a woman to play in all male ice hockey team. Under the International Ice Hockey Federation's regulations, this is not permitted.

9. Executive Committee's motion to institute the Annual Awards for Deaf Sportsman and Sportswoman was unanimously approved. The 1996 Awards (then unofficial) winners were Jan Steinstra of Netherlands and Dawn Birley of Canada. Trophies will be purchased and forwarded to them. Rafael Pinchas as the founder and new chairman of the Awards Panel explained the timelines for the 1997 Awards.

10. Germany moved that the CISS withdraw its international membership with the World Federation of the Deaf. After a discussion the motion was approved but the CISS must seek to work with the WFD on a collaborative basis

International Olympic Committee
At the beginning of the second day of the Congress, Mr. Gilbert Felli, the Sports Director of the International Olympic Committee was introduced and invited to give a speech. Mr. Felli outlined two objectives of IOC: (i) to promote Olympism and cooperation among competitors. The IOC's treasury, thanks to television is in a healthy position, but can fund the work of Olympics up to the year of 2012. He fully recognizes the reasons for CISS' withdrawal from the International Paralympic Committee but suggested that CISS continue to communicate closely with the IPC in order to improve better understanding about our unique communication needs.

Determination of subscriptions and fees 1998 and 1999
The executive committee proposed a new system:

Membership Fees $US
New Members - 1 to 5 years $50
New Members - 6 to 10 years $100
1 to 10 clubs $200
11 to 20 clubs $300
21 to 30 clubs $400
31 to 100 clubs $600
100 clubs & more $1000

Authorization and participation fees

International competitions per participating country $100
World Championships (including Dresse & Maere Cups) $250
Deaf World Games (participating fees per athlete and official) $50

Report from 13th World Winter Games for the Deaf, 1995 Yllas, Finland
Juha-Matti Aaltonen gave a brief report. There was a deficit of $US 60,000 but the loss has been recovered. He thanked everyone for showing the spirit of Olympism.

Report from 14th World Winter Games for the Deaf, 1999 Davos, Switzerland
Walter Zaugg, President of Swiss Sports Federation for the Deaf, gave a presentation including a five minute video of Davos. All events will be held in Davos. They will conduct five different sports including snowboarding as a demonstration sport. The dates of the Games will be from 6 to 14 March 1999. After a short discussion regarding speed skating, it was agreed that due to lack of support this event is cancelled.

15th World Winter Games for the Deaf, 2003
Unfortunately there were no candidates to host the 15th Winter Games. The Executive will keep the bidding open and approach various countries to discuss their possible involvement. A Slovenian delegate expressed his interest, but needs to solicit support from his Association. Hopefully they can notify the Executive by June, 1998.

World Championships
After a long discussion, John Lovett advised that his Executive would need to review the World Championships calendar as there were feelings that some bids to conduct the World Championships were not following the procedures.

19th World Games for the Deaf 2001, Rome Italy
Renzo Corti and Sebastiano Manciagli made a presentation including unveiling the official World Games poster. There will be no problem with transportation which will be provided by Italian military forces, and they are looking forward to hosting the Games. The dates will be 24 July to 5 August, 2001.

Rubens-Alcais Statuette
This was first awarded in 1969 in Italy to national associations who did excellent work to promote deaf sports in the last two years. John Lovett announced with pleasure that the award recipient is Finland for a great job of hosting the Winter World Games in 1995 despite strong winds and snow, which caused delays in the 13th World Winter Games competitions.

CISS Medals
John Lovett advised that he received nine nominations of people to be awarded CISS medals in recognition of their achievements for the deaf sports. Three CISS medals were awarded to:

1) Knut Bjarne Kjøde of Norway for his work as CISS Technical Delegate (Nordic Skiing) and his work in the organisation of the 1987 World Winter Games in Oslo;

2) Wendy Home of Australia for her dedicated work over 10 years as the Administrator to Asia Pacific Deaf Sports Confederation, and

3) Boudweijn de Roose of Belgium for his untiring service to CISS first as a member of the Executive and for organizing the first Swimming and Water Polo World Championships in Brugge, Beligum in 1995.

Honorary Auditor
The Congress approved unanimously the appointment of Mr. Ole Artmann of RVT Revision as the CISS' Honorary Auditor.

Election of CISS Officers: (Term until 2001)
Following nominations from the floor and series of voting, the new CISS officers will hold their position until July 2001:

  • President John M. Lovett (Australia)
  • Vice President Renzo Corti (Italy)
  • Secretary-General Donalda K. Ammons (USA)
  • Treasurer no nominations - J. Lovett is to organise a search and make an appointment subject to ratification at Davos in 1999.
  • Members Rudi Gast (Germany) Vojtech Volejnik (Czech Republic)

During the counting of votes, Dr. Bob Steadward, President and Mr. Hans Lindstrom, Technical Officer of the International Paralympic Committee were introduced to the Congress by J. Lovett, who also invited Dr. Steadward to say a few words. Dr. Steadward said that the IPC (founded in 1981) now has 150 nation members. IPC also undergoes some changes in the constitution with new composition of officers. IPC continues to wish for a good working relationship with CISS.

1. Belgium expressed that it is having problems with the organisations of sports for the disabled regarding control of deaf sports in Belgium.

2. Australia would like for CISS to have its World Games at the same site as the Olympics and Paralympics.

3. Germany announced that there would be an international indoor track championships in Dortmund, Germany in March 1998.

4. Cuba would like CISS' help deal with the Cuban Paralympic Committee, its association is being forced to join the Paralympics. JML said he would write a letter.

5. Zambia pleads for more support from CISS- wanting more serious work with African countries with the upcoming seminar this coming October.

6. Canada and France (J.A. Robinson and I. Malaurie) moved a formal vote of thanks to recognize the hard and dedicated work by Knud Sondergaard for 24 years as the Secretary-General.

Contact Directory


International Committee of Sports for the Deaf
Maison du Sport International
Av. de Rhodanie 54, Lausanne, CH-1007
Representative - Ms. Xenia Morfopoulos, tel: +41 78733 35 67, email: xm@ciss.org


+7 (499) 255 04 36