Canadian women's soccer team takes fight for pay equity to Parliament
Federation publicly releases details of proposed collective bargaining agreement
Members of the Canadian women's soccer team take their fight for pay equity to Parliament today.
Captain Christine Sinclair, Janine Beckie, Sophie Schmidt and Quinn are scheduled to appear before the House of Commons Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage this afternoon. The four serve as the women's team player representatives.
The Canadian women, like their male counterparts, are embroiled in a bitter labour dispute with Canada Soccer, the sport's governing body.
The Olympic champion women want the same support and backing ahead of this summer's World Cup in Australia and New Zealand as the men did before their soccer showcase last year in Qatar. Both teams want Canada Soccer to open their books and explain why their programs are being cut this year.
The women, whose existing labour deal expired at the end of 2021, have struck an agreement in principle with Canada Soccer on compensation for 2022 but say other issues have yet to be resolved.
In a pre-emptive strike, Canada Soccer released details of its proposed collecting bargaining agreement with both national teams, saying it's time to get a deal done.
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Canada Soccer says its proposed deal would pay both teams the same amount for playing a match, with both squads sharing equally in competition prize money.
Canada Soccer says the women's team would become the second-highest-paid women's national squad among FIFA's 211 member associations, presumably behind the top-ranked U.S.
The governing body says the deal in front of the players "demonstrates Canada Soccer's commitment to its core principle that if you are a Canada Soccer national team player — regardless of your gender — you will be paid the same for the work you do competing and representing our country."
But it acknowledges that equal pay does not mean equal dollars when it comes to team budgets, saying the competitive calendar and FIFA World Cup qualification pathway for the men comes with "very different costs" than that of the women.
And Canada Soccer says Canadian Soccer Business, which markets its broadcast and sponsorship rights, is willing to amend its controversial agreement with the governing body.
Canada Soccer officials are due to appear before the parliamentary committee on March 20.
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