“Equal Play, Equal Pay” Initiative

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Written by Lauren Sheehan, Special to the Woodgrove Outlander

The “Equal Play, Equal Pay” initiative is bringing attention to the inequalities in pay regarding professional soccer players.  In the past month, star female players including Alex Morgan and Carli Lloyd have publicized this slogan on social media to draw attention about the inequality in salaries with men vs. women in the U.S. Soccer Federation.  They are accusing the federation of wage discrimination and have brought this serious problem to the table in the past month.

The U.S. women’s team earned 20 million dollars in revenue more than the men’s team in 2015.  The female players feel that the women’s team should be paid at least equal to the men’s team, especially if they are bringing in more revenue for the organization.

The women’s national team filed a lawsuit in March 2016 against the U.S. Soccer Federation for wage discrimination.  Five star players, including Hope Solo, Alex Morgan, Megan Rapinoe, and Co-captains Becky Sauerbrunn and Women’s World Cup MVP Carli Lloyd filed the lawsuit on behalf of the whole soccer team.  Many people believe the soccer team is doing the right thing to draw attention to the problem happening in the world today with the difference in women’s and men’s pay.

“There is no difference between the genders in terms of the game.  This example of the gender pay gap is not singular to the game of soccer.  We see it in different areas of employment across the U.S., and in other nations as well. The situation is unacceptable and has gone on too long,” said Woodgrove Girls Head Varsity Coach Erin Barrett.

Many people also side with the women because of their talent and popularity.

“They have had much more success at both the Olympics and the World Cup than the men can even dream of,” said Woodgrove JV Girls Coach Pat Cousland.

Cousland is correct. The women’s team has won four gold medals and have been World Cup champions three times.

“Even if you ignore all their achievements, they are basically doing the same job for a lot less than the men,” said Cousland.

In a friendly game, a men’s team player receives $5,000 for a loss and can earn up to $17,625 for a win, while a female player receives $1,350 for a similar match, but only if the United States wins.

“I think both teams should be paid equally because the women’s team has excelled in the past few years, but the men’s team hasn’t done much,” said Woodgrove Varsity player Chelsea Dougherty.

On the other hand, some people believe that the women should be paid equally even if they aren’t playing better than the men.

“As long as they are playing the same amount of games and attending the same amount of training camps, the women’s and men’s teams should be paid equally,” said Coach Cousland.

 

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