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Linda Sánchez and Jackie Speier Introduce Resolution Calling for Award Equity for Female Soccer Athletes

 Washington, DC- Reps. Linda T. Sánchez (CA-38) and Jackie Speier (CA- 14), along with 33 original co-sponsors, today introduced a resolution calling on the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) to immediately end gender discrimination between male and female athletes. The dominant performance by the U.S. Women’s National Soccer team drew international attention and record-breaking audiences to the 2015 Women’s World Cup.  However, the female athletes participating in this year’s World Cup were compensated far less than their male counterparts. The total payout for the 2015 Women’s World Cup is $15 million, the total for the 2014 men’s World Cup was $576 million, nearly 40 times as much.
“It baffles me to think the United States women’s soccer team or any women’s World Cup champion would be compensated significantly less than their male counterparts. Players should be rewarded for their performance rather than their gender,” Rep. Linda Sánchez said.  “It’s time for FIFA to correct this disparity between male and female athletes. We should send the message to girls and young women around the world that we value their hard work the same as men.”  
“Whether you’re a soccer mom or a starter on the US Women’s Soccer Team, women in our country deserve equal pay,” said Rep. Jackie Speier. “I’m proud to introduce this resolution demanding that FIFA ensure our championship women’s team is treated with the dignity and respect they deserve.”
The same resolution was introduced in the U.S. Senate this week by Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy.  The need to correct this unfair disparity is underscored by the fact that the Women’s World Cup winner – the United States – was awarded $2 million after defeating Japan in the final match which drew 25 million viewers in the U.S. alone. By comparison, Germany – the 2014 Men’s World Cup winner – was awarded $35 million. This pay inequity sends a terrible message to women and girls around the world about their value and contribution to sports.  It’s time female athletes were compensated equally.