Hey to everyone,I have been silent for a long time but the reason is because we went for our mid term break but now we are back back to the normal school program.Today I want to talk about how U.S women fight for equal pay.
The U.S. women’s soccer team has had a well-publicized fight for equal pay since winning this summer’s World Cup. But the battle with U.S. Soccer and FIFA started well before fans broke out in chants of “Equal pay!” at the team’s ticker-tape parade in New York City in July.
On August 14, mediation talks broke down between the USSF and the women’s soccer team, with a spokesperson for the players saying they “eagerly look forward to a jury trial.”The two sides met in New York for several days but could not reach any formal agreement.District Judge R. Gary Klausner set a trial date for the lawsuit brought against U.S. Soccer by members of the women’s national team (more on this below). The trial will begin May 5, 2020, and last four to five days.
Then on Nov. 8, a judge granted the players’ motion to be certified as a class action lawsuit — a win for the players. The players’ spokesperson for the lawsuit, Molly Levinson, called it “a historic step forward in the struggle to achieve equal pay.” Levinson added, in a statement: “We are so pleased the Court has recognized USSF’s ongoing discrimination against women players — rejecting USSF’s tired arguments that women must work twice as hard and accept lesser working conditions to get paid same as men.”
The class designation awards the players injunctive relief for any player who is a team member on the day of final judgment or appeal, as well as back pay and punitive damages for any player on the team at any time between Feb. 4, 2014, and the present.Things have continued to be contentious between the two sides since the conclusion of the World Cup. In July, U.S. Soccer president Carlos Cordeiro released a letter that claimed the federation has paid the female players more than the men in recent years. Cordeiro’s letter details analysis — which he says was conducted by his staff and reviewed by an accounting firm — that shows that U.S. Soccer paid female players $34.1 million in salaries and game bonuses from 2010 to ’18 and paid male players $26.4 million in the same period.
However, there was some murkiness because of the differences in the compensation structures for the men’s and women’s teams. What’s more, salaries in the National Women’s Soccer League were factored in to the calculations. Levinson called the letter “a sad attempt by USSF to quell the overwhelming tide of support the USWNT has received from everyone from fans to sponsors to the United States Congress.”
The U.S. men’s team issued a statement in support of the USWNT, saying, “The members of the United States National Soccer Team Players Association once again stands with the members of the world champion Women’s National Team in their pursuit of fair compensation for their work as professional soccer players. The USMNT players were not impressed with US Soccer Federation president Carlos Cordeiro’s letter made public on Monday. The Federation downplays contributions to the sport when it suits them. This is more of the same.”
They were most likely directed at both U.S. Soccer and FIFA, the world governing body of soccer, which puts on the World Cup. FIFA awarded $30 million in prize money for this year’s women’s tournament. The 2018 men’s tournament had $400 million in prize money. Although FIFA president Gianni Infantino has said he wants to double the prize money for the women’s tournament by 2023, the gap between the genders could grow, with FIFA expected to award $440 million for the men’s tournament in 2022.
FIFA’s position on prize money is that it’s tied to revenue. Simply, the men’s tournament brings in much more than the women’s. Some projections of what the tournaments earn in revenue have been made public, but not all of the numbers are available. (The New York Times reported projections of $6.1 billion for the 2018 men’s tournament, and FIFA projected the Women’s World Cup would bring in $131 million over the four-year cycle.) This raises the question of whether it’s fair to cut prize money proportionately. FIFA has the funds to close the gap; the organization’s cash reserves hit a record $2.74 billion in 2018.
Many women’s players have also expressed frustrations about institutional favoritism toward men. One example they point to: FIFA’s decision to schedule two men’s tournament finals (the Copa America men’s final and the CONCACAF Gold Cup men’s final) on the day of the Women’s World Cup final. Said Megan Rapinoe on the eve of the title game, “If you really care, are you letting the gap grow? Are you scheduling three finals on the same day? No, you’re not. Are you letting federations have their teams play two games in the four years between each tournament? No, you’re not. That’s what I mean about the level of care. You need attention and detail and the best minds that we have in the women’s game helping it grow every single day.”
As for travel, the lawsuit states that in 2017, the men’s team flew on chartered flights on at least 17 occasions, and the women did not have a chartered flight that year. In response, U.S. Soccer told ESPN that 2017 was the final year of qualifying for the men’s team prior to the 2018 World Cup, and therefore most of the flights were chartered for a competitive advantage. The organization said it has consistently offered the same travel accommodations for the men’s and women’s teams.