U.S. Women's Soccer Team Seeks Pay Equality


By:  Joyce M. Mocek

Recently five team captains of the US Women’s Soccer Team, on behalf of the entire team, filed a complaint with the EEOC against the US Soccer Federation alleging pay inequality and discrimination. The complaint seeks equal pay for the women soccer players.  They contend that they receive 28% or 62% less than the men soccer players depending on the type of game. The women soccer players were paid $2 million when they won the 2015 Championship, yet the men’s team received $9 million in the 2014 World Cup despite losing in the round of 16. The US Women’s Soccer Team contends that they are both more successful and profitable than the men’s team, yet they do not receive equal pay.

The Equal Pay Act prohibits sex-based wage discrimination between men and women who perform jobs that require substantially equal skill, effort and responsibilities which are performed under similar working conditions. Title VII also prohibits discrimination based on sex in pay or benefits. The complaint filed by the US Women’s Soccer Team with the EEOC seeks equal pay as the men’s team. The US Soccer Federation has not yet responded to the complaint. The complaint reflects the continuing focus and need to reduce the pay gap between men and women performing jobs that require substantially equal skill, effort and responsibility. This trend reinforces the need of employers to continue to monitor and evaluate the pay of all employees to ensure compliance with the laws.