Several professional curlers have began discussions with Curling Canada to address the issue of differences between the men’s and women’s payouts at the National Championships. The men’s Curling National Championship, The Brier, received over double the prize money compared to the female tournament, The Scotties Tournament of Hearts. Kevin Koe (Team Alberta) was rewarded the prize money of $70,000 while the winner of the female tournament, Chelsea Carey (Team Alberta) was only rewarded $32,000. Overall, the Brier drew more spectators than the Scotties, but television ratings were relatively similar. Curling Canada argues that the women receive jewelry as part of their participation, which increases the value of the women’s compensation.
When asked about their discussions with Curling Canada, Lisa Weagle, who is a curler on team Rachel Homan, states that:
“We’re confident that they’re listening to our concerns and they’re working with their sponsors to try to make it equal.”
Curling isn’t the only sport where unequal pay between men and women is a serious issue. In the 100 highest-paid athletes, there was only one woman included: the great Serena Williams. The U.S Women’s National hockey and soccer teams are two of many strong advocates for gender equality and pay in the sport world today. Gender discrimination is sports is a reality and frustrated female athletes are continuously and actively demanding a change.
Despite the sport world being very male dominated, women are far more visible in sports today than any previous point in history. This movement for equal pay is proof that the change of gender equality is headed in a positive direction.