Read our joint statement with co-organizers of the 2023 Equality Summit.
Near the Women’s World Cup finale, CHJS-Australia and several organizations hosted the Equality Summit, an inspiring and celebratory event to promote equality in sport. Panels and workshops with some of the greatest minds and influences, including an impromptu speech by the inimitable Billie Jean King, left us feeling grateful for progress and excited for continued change.
And yet, the systemic abuse of power persists. We don’t want to be reacting. We should be actively dismantling and rebuilding systems that perpetuate inequality.
The behavior towards Spain athlete Jenni Hermoso is not shocking. Appalling but not a surprise. The Spain Women’s national Football team has repeatedly asked for change and improvements to the club over the past ten years.
Enough is enough. Change should not wait for worldwide viewership of live abuse.
We stand with the fellow organizers of the Equality Summit and jointly release the following statement, advocating for an end of abuse and sexism in sport and immediate accountability for Spain Women’s Football team.
Joint Statement from the Organizers of the 2023 Equality Summit
Three days before the FIFA Women’s World Cup Final, we co-hosted an Equality Summit in Gadigal (Sydney), Australia to discuss critical issues facing women, girls, and equity at large in football. Player safety and security was a topic we discussed at length.
We ended the Equality Summit feeling invigorated, inspired and connected. And shortly after, we collectively witnessed the historic victory for Spain Women’s Football team, a well-deserved win for a team that dominated the tournament.
What hope we felt for the future of equality in sport was short lived. We are outraged by Luis Rubiales’ actions; from unprofessionally and inappropriately grabbing his crotch and kissing Jennifer Hermoso without her consent to gaslighting the players, victim blaming and threatening to sue Hermoso. The response from Spain’s Football Federation was equally abhorrent. When Hermoso needed care and support, the Federation made threats
and dismissed an assault that was witnessed around the world.
Sadly, these actions come as no surprise as the Spain Women’s Football Team have attempted to shed light on the unprofessional and unsafe working conditions they have been experiencing for years prior to kickoff of the World Cup.
As organizers of the 2023 Equality Summit, we stand with Jennifer Hermoso, Spain’s Women’s Football Team, and all women in sport who deserve safety and to be treated with dignity and respect.
For decades, female athletes have been subjected to unfair wages, fewer resources, inferior support and poor treatment. Time’s up. We demand accountability for Spain Women’s Football Team.
Safety is a human right. The Federation must act now to reestablish player safety and restore trust. #ContigoJenni
Center for Healing and Justice Through Sport
Equal Playing Field
Institute for Sport and Social Justice
Women in Soccer
With any questions or comments, please reach out to us.