In a move that will dramatically increase the amount paid to many of the country’s female athletes, male and female international soccer players will soon earn equal pay in Norway. According to various reports, Norway’s football association will almost double the amount it pays to its female national team, setting an equal amount of earnings for both teams. As a result, women who represent the country in international matches will be able to better focus on their sport.
The Norweigan football association will increase its renumeration pot — the amount of money collectively paid to the team — for its women’s team from 3.1 million krone (almost $379,000) to 6 million krone (almost $751,000). To make the adjustment possible, the men’s team will contribute its earnings from commercial appearances. Players’ union leader Joachim Walltin reportedly celebrated the salary adjustment as the first of its kind.
“Norway is a country where equal standing is very important for us, so I think it is good for the country and for the sport,” Walltin said. One reason it will be good for the sport? The increase in pay could legitimize women’s soccer as a valuable commitment. “For the girls, it will certainly make a difference. Some of them are actually working and studying, as well as playing football, and it’s hard to improve then,” Walltin continued.
— Justine Lucas (@Justo3590) October 8, 2017
The news was widely celebrated on social media, as the debate over equal pay in athletics has taken hold in many countries around the world. Noting the gesture taken by her male counterparts, Caroline Graham Hansen, a member of Norway’s women’s national team, shared a photo of the men’s team on Instagram with a grateful caption.