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Thursday, 14 May 2020 01:15

Equal Pay: US Women’s National Soccer Team Suffers First Setback

equal play trial first setback

Last year the U.S. women’s national soccer team (USWNT) embarked on a battle for equal pay.

“The rate of pay is just so different. It’s just so frustrating. To be honest, I think many women go through this,” Megan Rapinoe said in an interview on “CBS This Morning”.

The USWNT has gone through a lawsuit to get the same pay as men playing the same sport. In early May, a first step was taken and the ruling of U.S. District Judge R. Gary Klausner wasn’t what was expected.

He found that the complaint filed by the USWNT for equal pay did not warrant a trial.

In his view, the U.S. Soccer Federation offered the USWNT the same “pay-to-play” salary structure that’s used by the men’s team, namely a system that pays players “bonuses” based on individual performance.

Instead, the USWNT accepted a different structure, one that allowed them to negotiate their annual salaries, had better maternity benefits, and included severance pay, as reports The Washington Post.

megan rapinoe

But Rapinoe says her team was never offered the same contract for the same amount of money as the men’s team.

“When we went through our CBA — I think the judge in the court ruling alluded to this that now that the contracts have played out we’re just saying that because we’ve made less we would like to go to the men’s contract,” she said on CBS.

“The men’s contract was never offered to us. And certainly not the same amount of money. So to say that we negotiated for a contract and that’s what we agreed to, I think so many women can understand what this feeling is going to a negotiation, knowing equal pay is not on the table. Knowing anywhere close to your male counterparts is not on the table.”

USWNT spokesperson Molly Levinson said they would immediately appeal the decision.

All is not lost, as there are still two elements which have not yet been settled on:

  1. discrimination on the grounds of providing charter flights for the men but not women
  2. limited support services for women as opposed to men.

The trial is scheduled for June 6, 2020.

The judge’s ruling was a real shock. I think everyone is placing a lot of hope in this trial.

Megan Rapinoe and Alex Morgan shared their disappointment during “Good Morning America” (GMA) while clarifying that the fight would not end there.

alex morgan

“We really do believe in this case. Like Megan said, we were just shocked,” Morgan told GMA’s Robin Roberts. “This decision was out of the left-field for us. I think for both sides it was very unexpected. We will definitely be appealing and moving forward. If anyone knows about anything about the heart of this team, we are fighters and we will continue to fight together for this.”

She continues:

“This is definitely a hurdle in the road, but it’s not something that’s going to stop or deter us for something we’ve been true to.”

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