Chairwoman Maloney Hails Equal Pay Agreement for U.S. Women’s National Team Players in Landmark Settlement

Feb 22, 2022
Press Release
Victory Comes After 2021 Oversight Hearing and Pressure from Congress

Washington, D.C. (February 22, 2022)—Today, Rep. Carolyn B. Maloney, Chairwoman of the Committee on Oversight and Reform, issued the following statement in response to the settlement reached in an equal pay lawsuit brought by players on the U.S. Women’s National Team (USWNT) against the U.S. Soccer Federation.  In addition to a monetary settlement, the U.S. Soccer Federation agreed to pay players an equal rate of pay for the Women’s and Men’s National Teams in all future tournaments, including the World Cup:

 

“I am absolutely thrilled that these world champions will finally get the recognition—and pay—they have earned,” said Chairwoman Maloney.  “This win sets a significant precedent for all women across the country who deserve to be equally compensated for our work, time and talents.  On average, women in this country are still paid only 82 cents for every dollar paid to a man, and the gap is even worse for women of color.  I will continue to fight until the gender wage gap is eliminated, on and off the playing field.”

 

“One of the necessary reforms to ensure the long-term, total elimination of the gender wage gap is recognition of the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA).  The ERA would establish freedom from discrimination on the basis of sex as a constitutional right.  There is no other way to fully enforce equal pay for equal work in the courts without the ERA, and it is the foundational fix we need to stem the tide of gender inequality in our country.”

 

Background

In March 2021, Chairwoman Maloney held a hearing on Equal Pay Day, which marks the extra days and weeks it takes American women to make the same pay that their male counterparts made in the previous year.  USWNT champion Megan Rapinoe spoke about the pay discrimination she had experienced at the hearing.  In response to a question from Chairwoman Maloney about why her team pursued their equal pay lawsuit, Ms. Rapinoe testified, “First of all it’s just the right thing to do.”  She continued, “Yes we’re fighting for ourselves…but we’re with everyone.  We’re with so many women across the country.  We are with so many women who aren’t able to be in this Committee hearing, who aren’t able to get the ear of the media, who do not have the bright lights and the cameras on them all the time.  We are looking to carry this torch for so many other women.”

 

In July 2021, Chairwoman Maloney led a resolution calling for USWNT players to receive equal pay to that of their male counterparts.  The Chairwoman also penned an op-ed in USA Today with colleagues Reps. Rosa DeLauro and Doris Matsui about the wage discrimination the players faced.  The Members wrote:

 

“[E]veryone, regardless of their gender, deserves fair and equal compensation for their work.  Players on the women’s national team proudly represent our nation on the world’s stage.  They are role models for girls and women everywhere.  Not only because they fight for victory on the field, but also because they fight for equality off the field.  So while the world watches the U.S. women’s national team compete at the Tokyo Games, it is our duty to ensure they earn their most important and consequential victory yet – equal pay here at home.”

 

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Issues: 
117th Congress