Equal pay for women in soccer
The United States women’s football team bid equal pay has been dismissed by a court. The ruling judge rejected the players’ claims they were underpaid compared to the men.
Last year, the lawsuit was filed by 28 women’s national team players against the US Soccer Federation (USSF).
They had been seeking $66m (£52.8m) in damages under the Equal Pay Act. Molly Levinson, spokeswoman for the players said that they planned to appeal against the decision.
“We are shocked and disappointed,” said Levinson. “We will not give up our hard work for equal pay.
“We are confident in our case and steadfast in our commitment to ensuring that girls and women who play this sport will not be valued as lesser just because of their gender.”
Others have on hearing the news have issued words of support and encouragement. Joe Biden, the presumptive Democratic nominee for US president in this year’s election, told the team to not “give up this fight”, adding: “This is not over yet.
“To US Soccer: equal pay, now. Or else when I’m president, you can go elsewhere for World Cup funding.”
Federal judge Gary Klausner allowed the players’ case for unfair treatment in travel, housing and medical support to go to trial, which is set for 16 June in Los Angeles.
Giving its ruling, the court said: “The women’s team has been paid more on both a cumulative and an average per-game basis than the men’s team over the class period.”
The US team won the Women’s World Cup last summer for their fourth title overall. They have also won five Olympic gold medals.
Megan Rapinoe, who won the Golden Ball and Golden Boot at last year’s World Cup, on hearing the ruling, tweeted:“We will never stop fighting for equality.”
Fellow US striker Alex Morgan said: “Although disappointing to hear this news, this will not discourage us in our fight for equality.”
The Soccer federation said it has support do the women to keep growing stronger.
Its statement added: “US Soccer has long been the world leader for the women’s game on and off the field and we are committed to continuing that work.”
Pleasantly, male players have publicly supported the women team and in February they issued a statement criticising the governing body, saying that “the federation continues to discriminate against the women in their wages and working conditions”.