The Norwegian Football Association has announced that it will pay male and female players the equally. Female soccer players will now make 6m krone, compared to 3.1m krone before, to equal the salaries of their male counterparts. The 6m will include the 550,000 krone paid for commercial activities.
“Thank you for making this step for female athletes,” Norway winger Caroline Graham Hansen said in a BBC report. “This was maybe a small thing for you to do for us, this will maybe not show in your monthly wages, this was maybe an obvious move for you to do,” Hansen added in an Instagram post. The post continued:
“But this means everything for us, for our team, our sport, and for all the female athletes out there, who do the same work, the same sport as men do, but get paid less. For you to say that equal pay is how it should be, makes me want to cry. It makes me want to hug you all. Thank you for making this step for female athletes. For showing equality and for helping us all, making it a bit easier, to chase our dreams. To make them come true! RESPECT #equalgame #equalpay.”
According to Joachim Walltin, the boss of the players union, Norway is the first nation to officially pay their soccer players equal wages.
“Norway is a country where equal standing is very important for us, so it is good for the country and for the sport,” he said. “For the girls, it will certainly make a difference. Some of them are working and studying, as well as playing football, and it’s hard to improve then. The feeling of being really respected is very important for them. The federation can see it as an investment to increase the level of the women’s team.”
This news comes at a time when several women’s national teams are protesting both equal pay as well as other labor conditions. Just last month, Denmark canceled a match against the Netherlands over a monetary dispute. The men’s team offered the women’s team money to help.
“In Denmark they are still negotiating and in the United States things have improved, but we might be the only country where they are treated equally,” added Walltin.
In addition, the Argentinian women’s team recently went on strike due to playing conditions, travel conditions and pay. The Brazilian national team wrote an open letter to their confederation with multiple grievances this past week.
[More from Excelle Sports: Frustrated Brazilian national team alumni write open letter to football confederation]