Target: Joseph Blatter, FIFA President
Goal: Let players play on real grass in the upcoming Women’s World Cup
Some of the world’s best female soccer players filed a discrimination lawsuit against FIFA for insisting on using artificial turf in the upcoming Women’s World Cup in Canada. The players claim that this decision is a form of gender discrimination and that artificial turf would never be used in the men’s World Cup. They claim that artificial turf is more difficult to play on, is harder on players’ bodies, and increases the risks of injury. The players and their supporters say that this shows that FIFA is not making women’s soccer a priority and takes it less seriously than the men’s competitions. Please express your support for the players’ cause and ask FIFA to provide them with the best and safest conditions in their most important competition.
The lawsuit was filed by some of the top soccer players in the world, including the US’s Abby Wambach, who is the world’s top international goal scorer, male or female. Wambach stated, “[FIFA] knows it’s not okay. If you were to ask all of them, they know that they would never do this to men.” Recently a group of nine US senators also expressed their support in a letter to FIFA, saying, “This is about more than the playing surface on which soccer matches are played: it is about the message we are sending to women and girls around the world.”
FIFA’s decision to save money at the expense of the players’ health and ability to play well truly shows their priorities. Being a female soccer player is not very appreciated as it is—there are only two female soccer players in the world who make more then $80,000 a season, and most players make between $6,000-$30,000. In men’s soccer, on the other hand, dozens of players make millions of dollar every year. Female athletes are not being compensated properly, but they should at least be allowed to play in the best, safest conditions. Please call on FIFA to allow players to play on grass and stop treating women’s soccer as a non-priority.
Dear Mr. Blatter,
The Women’s World Cup is fast approaching, and players have been fighting against your decision to hold the entire competition on artificial turf instead of grass. This puts players at a higher risk of injury and makes it harder for them to play well. It also sends a very strong message that women’s soccer is simply not as important as men’s, as we all know this would never happen with a serious men’s competition. Please comply with the players’ demand and prove that you take women’s sports seriously by allowing them to compete on grass.
A group of US senators also recently joined the players’ plea and wrote a letter in their support. In their letter they wrote, “We believe that FIFA’s approach is sending the wrong message: FIFA literally is requiring female athletes to preform on an unequal playing field – one that it would not let men play upon.” Female players work just as hard as the male players, but are barely compensated for their work and talent. The least you can do is allow them to play in the best conditions possible. Please take a stand for women’s sports by complying with the players’ demand.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Joel Solomon via Wikimedia Commons