Published: Thu, July 11, 2019
Sport | By Kayla Schwartz

Cuomo signs law guaranteeing equal pay for USWNT

Cuomo signs law guaranteeing equal pay for USWNT

Amid confetti and chants of "equal pay", NY honored the US women's soccer team on Wednesday with a ticker-tape parade up the "Canyon of Heroes", celebrating its World Cup triumph and hailing the players' emergence as icons of women's rights.

U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin, a Democrat, introduced a bill Tuesday that would bar federal funding for the men's 2026 World Cup until the U.S. Soccer Federation provides equal pay to the women's and men's teams.

But just as she did while in France over the last month during the Women's World Cup games, Rapinoe stood defiantly with her hands clasped behind her back and a wide smirk across her face.

For example, there was a $730,000 gender pay gap in 2019 U.S. World Cup bonuses, according to The Guardian.

A recent analysis by The Washington Post found that gauging disparities in compensation, where there were any, between male and female U.S. national team members was made somewhat complicated by their different salary structures, as determined by separate collective bargaining agreements with the U.S. Soccer Federation.

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The festivities will honor the national team's remarkable run in France, where the USA women went undefeated in the World Cup, turning away determined challenges from talented and physical squads such as France, the United Kingdom and the Netherlands. "All women should receive fair and equal pay, including our women athletes in every sport".

According to The Washington Post, which cited copies of both agreements, female USA soccer players can sign contracts that provide an annual salary of $100,000 and additional bonuses for wins and ties. The suit alleges that the organization discriminated against the women by paying them less than members of the men's national team "for substantially equal work".

"We don't want to have this huge, public, nasty fight, that's not really in the best interest for anyone", said Rapinoe, a U.S.co-captain. The men collectively bargained for what the federation calls a "pay-for-play" structure that is incentive-laden. At the final whistle of the final game of the tournament in Lyon, France, fans chanted "Equal Pay!" "By the way, they play it better", Cuomo said during a press conference. "It's such a special place, and obviously for this to be our first stop back here when we get back to the States, it's incredible", she told CBS New York. Yet as Team USA itself and many others have pointed out, the world's best female soccer players are not paid almost as much as their male equivalents in soccer or any other major sport. And it's partly why Federation Internationale de Football Association has already suggested it would double the prize money for the next women's World Cup. "What you see behind us is not for one person. It's about what you stand for off the field", Cordeiro said.

The pair are not the first lawmakers to file legislation inspired by the U.S. women's soccer team's fight for equal pay. "At this moment, they are cultural icons and should be paid as such".

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