Canada Soccer says interim funding agreement reached with women's national team players
Canada Soccer says a deal in principle has been reached with the women's national team players on an interim funding agreement for 2022.
The women's team has said they still haven't received pay for the 2022 season.
The national governing body says the terms of the interim agreement mirror a similar deal with the men's national team, including per-game incentives and results-based compensation.
"This is about respect, this is about dignity, and this is about equalizing the competitive environment in a world that is fundamentally unequal," said Earl Cochrane, Canada Soccer General Secretary, in a statement released late Thursday.
A new overarching collective bargaining agreement with both the men's and women's national teams is still being negotiated — that means this interim agreement announced today with the women's players is subject to change based on a final collective bargaining agreement.
This interim funding agreement comes in the midst of an ongoing labour battle between Canada Soccer and the women's national team.
Players from the Olympic champion women's team including Christine Sinclair and Janine Beckie have been outspoken about pay equity and fair treatment when it comes to resources being put into their program.
Last June Canada's men's national team refused to play an exhibition game against Panama and the women's team played under protest last month at the SheBelieves Cup after Canada Soccer threatened legal action saying the team was not in a position to strike at that time.
It's been a hectic week for Canada Soccer. It started Monday when president Nick Bontis resigned saying "this moment requires change."
WATCH | Crooks named interim president of Canada Soccer:
Then on Wednesday, five-time Olympian and Order of Canada member Charmaine Crooks was named interim president — she's the first woman and person of colour appointed to the role.
Crooks has been on the Canada Soccer board since 2013-14 and was elected vice-president in November 2020.
"I know and understand the calls to get this right, and I am certain that we will be able to deliver real progress for our national teams all the way on down to our grassroots," Crooks said in a statement.
Canada Soccer says with the principle terms of agreement in place between the two parties, final details of the interim funding agreement are being finalized by their respective legal counsel.
"While this is an important step forward, and it signals progress, there is still more work to do to ensure both of our national programs are given the necessary resources and supports to prepare and compete," Cochrane said.