United Steelworkers affiliates with group of professional soccer players – Sportico.com

The United Football Players’ Association, a nonprofit organization that advocates for players not represented by the NFLPA, scored a touchdown in the working world. Later this morning, United Steelworkers, one of the largest and most influential unions in the country, will announce its affiliation with the UFPA. Membership will allow the UFPA to represent players in the USFL, XFL and other professional football leagues.

Under the new affiliation, the USW and UFPA will defend players facing pay issues and health issues. It will also help them navigate the complexities of workers’ compensation policies and lobby for improved travel arrangements, practice facilities and schedules. Additionally, both associations will require transparency on wages, so players and their agents know what other players are earning.

While NFL players are confident that their league, whose franchises are collectively worth $112 billion, will stay in business for the duration of their careers, it’s a different story for players in other leagues. soccer. In 2019, the American Football Players Alliance abruptly collapsed due to financial difficulties, leaving AAFP players without pay and, in some cases, stranded in road towns. A year later, the XFL declared bankruptcy and was shut down at the start of the pandemic.

Players in alternative football leagues now have a powerful advocate. The USW represents 850,000 men and women employed in manufacturing, chemicals, technology, public sector and service industries, among other professions. He has considerable expertise in collective bargaining and can play a key role in ensuring the honesty of management.

“Joining a union to negotiate better treatment now is the single most important step we can take to raise our standard of living in the future,” said UFPA President Kenneth Farrow II.

Farrow, 28, has played in the NFL, AAF and XFL. Recalling how he suffered injuries and “helped other players through several league bankruptcies”, Farrow realized “we can’t rely on [leagues] to ensure our job security and financial stability.

The UFPA-USW affiliation arrives just in time for the USFL Draft, which takes place Feb. 22-23. As for the XFL, it plans to return in 2023. The XFL is under new ownership, a group led by RedBird Capital Partners CEO Gerry Cardinale, businessman Dany Garcia and actor Dwayne “The Rock “Johnson.

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