This week, one man took the Paycheck Fairness Act to court.
A tennis court, that is.
In a recent interview with a French radio station, tennis player Gilles Simon (ranked 15 in this year’s Wimbledon tennis tournament) wowed us with the following: He thinks female professional tennis players should earn less than their male counterparts for each win on the courts.
According to ESPN, Simon cited a few tenuous reasons for his assertion:
- Men’s professional tennis traditionally makes more than women’s professional tennis. This year, a ticket to the men’s Wimbledon final will cost $25 more than a ticket to the women’s Wimbledon final.
- Men spend more time on the court per match. Men must win the best of five sets in a tennis match, women the best of three.
- And the kicker: “Men’s tennis is really far ahead of women’s tennis at this stage,” Simon says.
Big names on the women’s tennis circuit are, needless to say, outraged. Maria Sharapova, currently ranked number one in the world, explained with sarcasm: “I’m sure there are a few more people that watch my matches than his.” Echoing her sentiments, an ESPN writer joked: “He doesn’t exactly move the financial needle.”
Simon hurls himself into an ongoing dialogue about salary fairness. And he acknowledges his place in this conversation: “We often talk about salary equity. I don’t think it works in sport.”
Gilles Simon’s claims remind us that women still don’t make as much as men in many industries. While the winnings in all grand slam tennis tournaments are equal for men and women, women make, on average, 77 cents for every dollar a man makes across all professions.
Given this stat, take some time to stir the salary pot like Simon. It’s easy to research the average salary for your profession (we show you how here). Don’t settle for less than you deserve.