USWNT Lawsuit Puts Pay Inequality in the Spotlight

By Nicole Robina, Contributing Writer

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Hope Solo (pictured) is among the five USWNT filing a lawsuit against the U.S. Soccer Federation because of pay inequality. Photo courtesy of real_joerdeli (Flickr)
Hope Solo (pictured) is among the five USWNT filing a lawsuit against the U.S. Soccer Federation because of pay inequality.
Photo courtesy of real_joerdeli (Flickr)

When it comes to soccer, the United States takes pride in their female squad. People continue to splurge on their favorite player’s gear, totaling a whopping $20 million last year alone. Over time, this team has become part of our homes as we watch them in awe.

As wage discrimination continues to be at the forefront of politics, it was no surprise that five of the top players filed a federal complaint against the United States Soccer governing body for reported wage discrimination. The players include Hope Solo, Megan Rapinoe, Alex Morgan, Becky Sauerbrunn and New Jersey native Carli Lloyd.

These players continue to say that the numbers say it all. With the U.S. men’s team average salaries at $263,320, U.S. women’s average wage is a mere $99,000.

If each U.S. National team won 20 friendlies, the men would make nearly three times the amount that the women would make.
If each U.S. National team won 20 friendlies, the men would make nearly three times the amount that the women would make.

As the U.S. soccer governing body responds to these claims, they said that despite the women’s popularity last year, the men’s team continues to generate more revenue and draws way larger crowds to their games. They plan on working to resolve the conflict.

As previously mentioned, wage discrimination has been in the spotlight during the recent calls for action from public figures like Jennifer Lawrence. It has recently been estimated that for the same work, a woman only makes 77 cents to a man’s dollar.

The United States prides itself on the notion that everyone is treated as an equal. However, recently many cases have claimed that the numbers don’t support this idea. Steps must be taken to right this discrimination.

As I do understand the reasoning the United States Soccer Federation is giving to explain the wage gap, I believe that the starting salaries of players should be equal. As of now, the women’s team start at an average base salary of $72,000 and the men’s average base salary is $100,000. Based on their performance, both teams should have the same bonuses available to them.

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