The Canadian Soccer Players Association sent out a press release today summarizing some answers to frequently asked questions to them over the last week. Here’s the high level summary:
The interim deal is only an attempt to address the Canadian Soccer Association’s failure to pay the players anything for 2022. It does not solve the deeper issues which led to the labor action, and although those negotiations have been ongoing since January 2022, there is still a lot of work to be done.
The players see the new President of Canada Soccer Charmaine Crooks as the “old guard” as she was on the board when the Canada Soccer Business deal was signed in 2018 and has appeared allied with Nick Bontis. They haven’t seen anything in the past to suggest she was working to promote the Women’s National Team’s interests.
The three main issues that are holding up the deal on the players side are:
1. The persistent failure by Canada Soccer to make proper financial disclosure to the players
2. The financial constraints imposed by the Canada Soccer Business deal, which does not have Canada Soccer reaping the success of the national team
3. The desire by the Women’s National Team players to ensure that a deal will establish fair and equitable standards and support that continues once media attention dies out.
On the first note, Canada Soccer has provided some limited financial disclosure, but it was inconsistent with previous disclosures and they are still working to set up a meeting with someone who can answer the players’ questions.
The high priority item for the players association is proper funding for the Women’s National Team for 2023 and the youth national team.
For the establishment of equitable standards, although both the Men’s and Women’s National team have seen funding cut, there is still a large spending disparity for the programs and the Women’s National team is being told they can’t run camps for all of the FIFA windows in 2023, the scheduled camps will be shorter and bring in fewer players than normal.
While the Women’s National Team intends to play in the April FIFA window, the participation is contingent on meaningful progress being made on a number of the bargaining issues.
Lastly, on March 9th the Heritage Committee will hear from Sophie Schmidt, Janine Beckie, Quinn, and Christine Sinclair.
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