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The American women’s soccer team sets the closing price of the lawsuit: $ 67 million

Both the United States Football Association and members of the champion’s national women’s team in the World Cup have suggested leaving a bitter suit for equal pay in court filings Thursday evening.

The federation sought to avoid a looming gender discrimination trial by asking the judge to reject the players ’claim. Female players have also asked women to make a pre-trial decision, but in different terms: They are looking for roughly $ 67 million – and possibly millions more – for wages and damages.

Completely opposed proposals, which were filed on Thursday in a California federal court before the midnight deadline, showed how long American and soccer players stay not only in what they consider to be a fair outcome, but also in their basic concepts of what constitutes equal pay despite Years of litigation, deposits, and public relations campaigns – and in between – two consecutive World Cup tournaments.

Judge, R. Gary Klausner of the US District Court in Central California in California, can choose either of the two solutions, has called for a request for a summary judgment, and an ongoing trial that started in May. But while Klausner seemed to support some women’s claims about wage inequality and working conditions when he was awarded the Players Status in November training class, both players and American football expect him to allow the case to proceed to the trial rather than choosing a winner. Now on one side terms.

The kind of multi-million dollar rewards that players have sought – a group of dozens of athletes, including stars like Alex Morgan and Carly Lloyd but also players who have participated in a few appearances for the national team – would be a big blow to the United States. Finance in football, which may affect spending not only on national teams for men and women but also on youth development, training and referee education and dozens of football programs at the grassroots level.

In her introduction, and in placing a public dollar amount on a possible prize for the first time, women’s players submitted their request for a summary judgment as a simple matter, “the rare issue” where they are entitled to victory because of their claims of inequality. .

“There are no real-world issues to prevent the core issues of USSF’s responsibility for wage discrimination in favor of plaintiffs,” wrote Jeffrey Kessler, lead player attorney, noting that it supports the words of current and former US football officials and even A recent statement from the men’s national team players union.

When he said that the union’s actions were in clear violation of federal law, specifically the Equal Pay Act and Title VII, an expert appointed by the players calculated paid compensation and damages of $ 66,722,148, “with a request for more criminal compensation in the trial at May . “

The players ’expert said that this figure was reached by taking women’s performances, schedules, match results and calculating what they could have earned under the separate compensation schedule applied to the United States national team. Such calculations, the United States has long argued for football, inaccurate – and unfair – because it includes FIFA World Cup rewards, the global governing body of sport, for the most profitable Men’s World Cup.

These payments dwarf the payments that were made to compete in the Women’s World Cup, but were determined by FIFA, not by American football.

In the context of furthering their case, the players ’attorneys conveyed the comments of current US President Carlos Cordero and his predecessor, Sunil Gulati, who said they had proven the union guilty of making gender-based decisions.

US football files have been cited by midfielder Megan Rapoyne, the outspoken defender of the players’ cause. In this quote, she commended the long support of the Women’s Football Association in general and the national team in particular, and said that comparing women’s jobs with men was “just an apple and an orange.”

In her proposal, the United States football argued – as it did, Sometimes clumsy, In other forums – that men and women players are separate groups that perform different actions, and that any discrepancies in compensation are a direct result of the separate collective bargaining agreements negotiated by each team.

“As a result of the collective bargaining process, WNT players have obtained many contract terms that MNT players do not have in their contract,” said US Soccer, included, among other things, guaranteed club salaries, maternity and childcare benefits, and termination pay when it did not Prepare on the team.

US Soccer also indicated that players have long identified priority – and they did again in their last decade in 2017 – a compensation system that emphasized security, in the form of guaranteed salaries, on possible higher rewards in the reward-based payment structure that men played under .

United States Football Lawyers claimed that this was against the law, to allow the jury to rewrite the collective bargaining agreement “retroactively and selectively” to give them the highest reward advantage “When they never took the highest risk.”

Indeed, the American football team has argued that players in the women’s team have paid millions of dollars more than their male counterparts by the Confederation in recent years: $ 37 million for women, when their salaries were included in clubs, to $ 21 million for men. But these accounts are also misleading: players earn their salary in clubs by playing dozens of games more than men, and the account covers a time period – as women – in the Federal Federation – won my millions of dollars in rewards for winning the World Cup while men missed the 2018 World Cup , So he never received any FIFA Reward.

As in 2016, by pressing their case, women players risk seeing their attempts to get equal pay intertwined with their preparations for the Summer Olympics. Earlier this month, the United States She qualified for the Tokyo Games by winning a regional championship. In March and April, the team will run a series of matches against the major competitors heading also to Tokyo – including England, Japan, Brazil and Australia – all while the US challengers are competing in the wage equal battle against each other to try to secure one of the 18 places on the Olympic list.

Then, if Klausner does not take any action on the pending petitions to rule briefly, the two sides will meet in the courtroom on May 5.

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