The United States women’s national team cannot go on strike, according to a court ruling issued Friday.
Judge Sharon Johnson Coleman ruled Friday that the terms of the players’ existing collective bargaining agreement with the U.S. Soccer Federation are still valid. With both sides presently operating under a memorandum of understanding, the U.S. women’s national soccer team players association had argued that the terms had expired, and had discussed going on strike prior to the upcoming Olympics.
U.S. soccer released a statement on the matter.
“Today, Judge Coleman ruled in favor of U.S. Soccer and affirmed that the existing CBA with the U.S. Women's National Team Players Association is valid through the end of 2016, including the no-strike, no lockout provision,” the federation wrote. “We are pleased with the Court's decision and remain committed to negotiating a new CBA to take effect at the beginning of next year.”
The federation previously warned that a strike could force the U.S. to withdraw from the Olympics entirely, hurting the development of the game nationally. The players’ union wanted the option to strike, although it had not committed to doing so.
The previous collective bargaining terms are set to expire in December.
The decision that players cannot legally strike comes separate from the wage discrimination complaint made by five players in March, which deals with how much money members of the team are making relative to members of the men’s national team.