The good news was received by American women’s soccer players recently after they reached a landmark agreement with America’s governing body for sports to end a six-year legal battle over equal pay. In the agreement reached, the female footballers were promised to receive a salary of 24 million US dollars plus the same bonus that had been received by male footballers.
The USSF American Football Federation and the women’s footballers announced a deal that would see the players share $22 million in damages, or actually only about a third of what they demanded.
USSF also agreed to raise two million dollars to benefit players after their careers in football are over, and charitable efforts to develop sports for women.
USSF is committed to providing equal pay rates for male and female footballers on the national team, including World Cup bonuses, and is subject to collective agreements with unions that separately represent male and female footballers.
Former USSF President who is now FIFA Senior Advisor on Global Strategy & Governance, Carlos Cordeiro said “to the women’s national team and the millions who support them, in recent months you have succeeded in raising your voice for equality. Now, on behalf of all of us at USSF, I want to say we hear you and are committed to doing what’s right for you.”
US women’s soccer star Megan Rapinoe described this settlement between the women’s footballers and USSF as “happier than winning the World Cup.”
“Winning the World Cup is a very tough task. Of course we did all that and fought off the pitch. It tastes the same as Hercules or in many ways even greater. I am very excited to go forward. I’m excited about this big wave we’re having,” Megan said.
American Soccer President Cindy Parlow Cone, said “I will be the first to admit that this federation has made some mistakes in the past. As a former player, I totally understand the frustration of such treatment and dealing with my predecessor Carlos Cordeiro. But I am very proud of the work we have done. This equal pay or equal pay is only one step towards rebuilding our relationship with the women’s football team.”
As for Megan Rapinoe, “hopefully this will be a new day in the world of American football.” [em/jm]