Female Athletes: Why Are They Still Paid Less?


Hannah Ortiz, Studio D Writer

In February 1869, a letter was sent to the editor of the New York Times asking why women that worked in the government didn’t get paid as much as the men.

Women were getting paid half the salary as men all the while still raising children. It took from 1869 to 1963 to make progress in this area when The Equal Pay Act of 1963 was passed on June 10th by President John F. Kennedy.

The act was put in place to do away with the wage difference based on gender; but let’s face it, women still get far less money than men. Let’s compare women’s pay verses the men in sports.

Throughout history male sports teams have been given more money, time, and attention. WNBA players’ salaries constitutes 22 percent of league revenue, while the NBA player salaries are 50 percent of league revenue.

In 2018 Forbes announced that the list of the top 100 highest – paid athletes are all males. Only 83% of sports now reward men and women equally.  According to Forbes, the NBA generated $7.4 billion in 2017 in comparison to the WNBA’s $25 million. However, the starting salary for the women’s league is $50,000, whereas the minimum salary for a professional NBA player is $582,180.

The Women USA Soccer Team have made history by winning four World Cups while the Men’s USA Soccer Team haven’t won a single one, yet the men get paid a significant amount more. The women’s team have also won more medals in the Olympics while the men haven’t even placed to qualify in the Olympics.  Still, the women’s team get paid 10-60% of what the mean get paid. It seems that the women are getting all the glory while the men get the paid the big bucks.

Even in the 21st century, women still make an average of .79 on the dollar to men. We have come a long way and it has taken many years to get where we are but it seems we still have a long way to go.