Petitions delivered to soccer federation in Chicago demanding equal pay

CHICAGO — A group of activists held a rally Tuesday for pay equality outside the U.S. Soccer Federation Headquarters in the South Loop.

Activists from six organizations gathered outside the headquarters to sound off about the pay gap for the national women’s soccer team.

Unlike the men, they basked in a victory parade this week after winning the World Cup for a fourth time. Yet, they are said to earn far less than the men.

U.S. Soccer argues it’s a complicated issue with club teams, endorsements, FIFA, sponsorships, revenue, and contract negotiations as major factors. But critics,  young and old, don’t buy that.

Activists delivered 200,000 petition signatures in support of equal pay for women to workers inside U.S. Soccer Headquarters.

According to a spokesman, U.S. Soccer would like to resolve the issue too, noting the bigger pay disparity in the championship payout awarded by FIFA: the men split about $40-million and the women win a purse of $4-million.

Negotiations are ongoing for a new women’s contract. The current contract expires next year.

Activists applaud the U.S. women’s team for bringing the equal pay fight to the forefront since -- in general -- women make less in many industries.

The U.S. men have never won a World Cup.

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