Response from the English FA to questions on human rights risks and due diligence ahead of FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022
Thank you for your email which was passed to me and for the documentation/reports you have supplied – they are very useful. I thought it’d be useful to provide an update on our work in this area as we continue preparations for Qatar 2022.
As we’ve previously stated, we are clear that the companies we partner with on the ground in Qatar must meet the required standards regarding workers’ rights and provide strong and rightful support to their employees. We continue to carry out due diligence, both directly with the service providers and alongside FIFA, which allocates most of the services used by competing teams as the tournament organisers. We’re in continued conversations with the ILO to ensure that they are supportive of our approach, and we will be able to provide further updates in due course, with another visit to Qatar scheduled next month.
I also wanted to share an update on discussions around the legacy of the 2022 World Cup, following the latest UEFA Working Group meeting, which FA CEO Mark Bullingham is part of.
The issue of compensation for workers who have been injured or lost their lives in construction projects related to the World Cup was discussed at length by the UEFA Working Group during the group’s last visit to Qatar in June. The Working Group agreed the principle that any injury or death should be compensated, and FIFA is now examining compensation mechanisms and has committed to providing more information and a response to the many NGOs who have highlighted this important issue in the coming weeks.
The discussions in Doha – the third site visit of the UEFA Working Group – emphasised the need for comprehensive efforts, both before and after the World Cup, to ensure that football continues to drive positive change in Qatar.
The UEFA Working Group also discussed, and in principle supports, the concepts of a Migrant Workers Centre. The UEFA Working Group believes that the concept of a Migrant Workers Centre in Qatar has the potential to leave an important and sustainable World Cup legacy. We had constructive conversations with several relevant groups in Doha, including migrant workers, and concluded that a centre could address some of the issues the migrant workers group raised with us, specifically around awareness of the new labour laws and legal support, providing a shelter for any abused workers, and translation services for workers to complete official forms and access information on workers’ rights.
FIFA and the Qatar Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy are now considering the concept in detail, and the specific problems that it would be designed to resolve. They referenced that they are having constructive conversations and have committed to keep us updated.
More information on the UEFA Working Group’s latest visit can be found here, and we will communicate the progress of the proposals and the World Cup legacy plans in due course.
Thank you for your continued dialogue and we will continue to keep you updated in due course.