US Women win class action right against USSF in equal pay dispute

November 12 – The equal pay lawsuit in the US between the United States women’s national team (USWNT) and US Soccer has taken a turn in favour of the women’s case in California.

A court ruling opened the case up by granting class certification, meaning that any woman who featured in a USWNT squad over the period specified in the lawsuit – from 4 February 2015 – is eligible to seek back pay and damages from the USSF.

US Soccer had opposed the USWNT’s request to certify the gender discrimination lawsuit as a class action, but the court ruled that the plaintiffs had “offered sufficient proof” that the USSF had failed to provide the USWNT with equal working conditions.

It is a blow for the USSF in the case after mediation between the two parties broke down in August with the USWNT claiming that the national federation were not appeared to address the pay structures.

“This is a historic step forward in the struggle to achieve equal pay,’ USWNT spokesperson Molly Levinson said in a statement. ‘We are so pleased that the court has recognised USSF’s ongoing discrimination against women players – rejecting USSF’s tired arguments that women must work twice as hard and accept lesser working conditions to get paid the same as men.

“We are calling on Carlos Cordeiro (USSF president) to lead USSF and demand an end to the unlawful discrimination against women now.”

The case is scheduled to go to trial on 5 May 2020.

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