The women’s U.S. soccer team has been on a roll in recent seasons leaving the world in shock with their talent on the field. They have raked in world and Olympic championships over the years, completely outranking the men’s U.S. soccer team.
So why exactly are they getting paid less than the men’s team?
The women of the successful team are taking a stand. Recently, five high-profile teammates Carli Lloyd, Hope Solo, Alex Morgan, Megan Rapinoe and Becky Sauerbrunn officially filed a federal equal-pay complaint.
According to Sauerbrunn, the decision to file this complaint was supported by their entire team wholeheartedly. In the complaint, the five soccer players sourced recent U.S. soccer financial reports as sound evidence that they have become the federation’s primary economic powerhouse but still earn less than the men’s team.
Tom Spiggle, an employment attorney and founder of the Spiggle Law Firm, offers his thoughts about the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) charge brought by the members of the U.S. women’s national soccer team.
Despite their greater success over the men’s soccer team, and despite making more than a $20 million profit, the women’s team is being paid a quarter of what the men's team is receiving.
The reason for this? In Spiggle’s opinion, it is purely due to discrimination against the women’s team on the basis of sex. Unequal pay is unlawful according to the Equal Pay Act and the Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
Interview with Tom Spiggle, April 1, 2016.
Top Female Players Accuse U.S. Soccer of Wage Discrimination. NY Times. April 1, 2016.
Women's Soccer Team Members File Federal Equal-Pay Complaint. NPR. April 1, 2016.