Women’s national team players who spent years fighting for equal pay hailed a historic agreement by US Soccer to pay a $24 million discriminatory dispute with the team, as well as a commitment to equal pay and bonuses for the men’s team game.
“I think we’ll look back at this moment and just think, ‘Wow, what an amazing turning point in the history of American football that changed the game and changed the world, really, forever,'” star midfielder Megan Rapinoe said.
The two sides announced a deal early Tuesday to split players for $22 million, about a third of what they sought for damages.. US Soccer has also agreed to create a $2 million fund for players in their careers after soccer and charitable efforts aimed at developing the women’s sport.
The proposal went even further, as the NFL’s board of directors pledged to achieve equal pay – including World Cup bonuses. It effectively ends the gender discrimination lawsuit that players brought in 2019.
But there is another snag: the collective bargaining agreement with the players’ unions. Negotiations with the women continue after the December 31 expiry of the latest capacity building agreement, with a deadline set for March 31.
The settlement was a victory for the woman whose audience chanted “Equal Pay!” When they won the World Cup for the second time in a row in France in 2019.
“I think it’s sometimes very difficult to speak up and express the kind of discrimination, abuse, injustice and disrespect that a lot of women often feel in their work,” Rapinoe said. “And I think we were able to start expressing that, putting a face on him, making points to talk to him and putting some kind of movement behind him.”
The agreement was also a success for FA President Cindy Barlow-Kohn, a former player who became FA President in March 2020.
“Now we can start working with the players to develop this game because they are not only the best players in the world, they are the best ambassadors for our sport,” Kuhn said. “I am so glad we accomplished this. I look forward to working together and turning the page.”
Kuhn replaced Carlos Cordero, who resigned after the union filed a legal case in the case that alleged women had less physical ability and responsibility than their male counterparts. Cordero is currently seeking a job back from Kon When the USSF National Council meets on March 5 to vote on a four-year term.
The legal battle began when five American stars, including Rapinoe, Becky Sauerbrunn and Alex Morgan, filed a complaint with the Federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in April 2016. The players filed a lawsuit three years later, seeking damages under the federal Equal Pay Act and Title VII Bill of Rights. Civil.
The two sides settled the working conditions portion in December 2020, dealing with issues such as charter flights, accommodation and playing surfaces. They were scheduled to debate on March 7 in the United States’ Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in an attempt to return the portion of equal pay that a U.S. District Court had rejected.
The players and the federation asked the Court of Appeal on Tuesday morning to remove the case from its agenda. The $22 million will be divided into individual amounts suggested by players, subject to district court approval.
“Every generation fought that fight to close the gap and every generation left this program better for that fight, and we as current players are glad that this fight bridged that gap,” Sauerbrunn said. “There are a lot of achievements on the pitch such as the World Cup, Olympics and leagues, but this will really stand out as one of the most important moments.”
Kuhn said the federation’s approach to the World Cup rewards equation had yet to be determined. The federation so far has bonus payments from FIFA, which allocated $400 million for the 2018 men’s tournament, including $38 million for the French championship, and $30 million for the 2019 women’s tournament, including $4 million for the American champion.
“Until FIFA equalizes it for itself, we need both the men’s PA and the women’s PA to work with American football to find a solution to their equation,” Kuhn said.
The men were playing under the terms of the CBA that expired in December 2018. The Women’s Federation was at the negotiating table on Tuesday afternoon.
The USA has won four World Cups since the program began in 1985, while the men have not reached the semi-finals since 1930.
“It’s really incredible to stand alongside all of these women on the national team and feel like we’re making a difference, not just for ourselves, but for the next generation, for the women who stand shoulder to shoulder across sport and the workforce,” Morgan said. “I feel like it was a lot bigger than I expected, in a good way.”
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