The Combined Pay Of 200+ Female AFL Stars Will Still Be Less Than The CEO’s

Folks are furious over the tiny amount of money women AFL players are getting paid. For an entire season, most players will earn less than $5,000. 

When you take into account all the work they’re expected to put in, the players will earn well below minimum wage. 
Adding injury to insult, the players have to pay their own health insurance too. 
Quite clearly, it ain’t the sort of game you’d want to play without ample health insurance.
As freelance journo Erin Riley points out, a whole list of 25 players will make less for a season than the average single male player – all of whom, by the way, also have their health insurance covered for them.
To put it another way: 
 Suffice it to say, this is garbage, and twitter is full of righteous anger:

It’s early days for elite-level women’s AFL, and to some extent that does explain the pay gap. The money for male AFL players comes from sold out stadiums charging huge ticket prices, multi-million dollar sponsorship deals, and enormous audiences at home watching on TV. 
Committed, grassroots audiences don’t just spring up overnight, and so next year the AFL is basically paying the female AFL players on spec. That’s not an excuse to pay somebody less than the minimum wage, but it is the cold, hard, unpleasant reality of capitalism.
Soz Oliver.

They AFL operates as a business, and they’re not going to consent to throwing money away (although they do keep trying and failing to get Queensland interested in the game). Long term, how do we get female players sweet cash dollars? We raise interest. This weekend is a particularly excellent opportunity to boost the fanbase. Sadly, damningly, it’s not being taken advantage of.
There’s a huge all-star game in Melbourne this Saturday. Clearly, the AFL don’t think there’s much interest from spectators. It’s being played at Whitten Oval (which has a modest capacity), and is free to attend. Also, according to the AFL:

“The match will be broadcast live nationally on the Seven Network and Telstra via the AFL Live App and PLUS7 applications including Telstra TV, Apple TV, mobile and web.”

Which is another way of saying that it won’t really be on TV. This is bollocks, because the AFL men’s game is on a bye this weekend, so it’d be the perfect chance for getting footy fan’s eyes on the women’s game.
Should the AFL do more to bring attention to women’s football? For sure. But to you and me, that’s academic. You are reading this article because, presumably, you’re interested in women’s footy. Whether or not the AFL pay female players more comes down, basically, to people like you.
Snark on social media is fun and all, but it won’t tangibly help the cause. If you think players in women’s AFL deserve more money, and you want to do something about it, show the AFL that this game has a future, and get your arse to Whitten Oval this Saturday at 7pm.
If there’s interest in it, there’s money in it. The AFL are being dropkicks by not coughing up proper wages, but if you go and support the players, it’ll be that much easier to bring home mile-high Benjamin’s in the future. 

Photo: Getty/Quinn Rooney.