FIFA proposes mandatory maternity leave for women players

RESENDING WITH COMPLETE SCRIPT

VIDEO SHOWS: FILE FOOTAGE OF WOMEN'S NATIONAL TEAMS TRAINING / FILE FOOTAGE OF U.S. WOMEN'S NATIONAL TEAM CELEBRATING 2019 WORLD CUP WIN / FILE OF NETHERLANDS WOMEN'S TEAM CELEBRATING WITH NETHERLANDS FANS / FILE OF WOMEN'S COACHES LEADING TRAINING SESSIONS / SOUNDBITES FROM THE CHAIRMAN OF FIFA FOOTBALL STAKEHOLDERS COMMITTEE VICTOR MONTAGLIANI ON NEW LABOUR REGULATIONS FOR FEMALE PLAYERS / FILE FOOTAGE OF FIFA INSTALLATIONS

SHOWS:

DECINES-CHARPIEU, FRANCE (FILE - JULY 3, 2019) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL)

1. U.S. WOMEN'S SOCCER TEAM STRETCHING ON FIELD

2. U.S. WOMEN'S SOCCER GOALKEEPER, ALYSSA NAEHER, STRETCHING

3. VARIOUS OF MEGAN RAPINOE AND TEAM MATES RUNNING

OULLINS, FRANCE (FILE - JULY 2, 2019) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL)

4. NETHERLANDS SQUAD RUNNING ON PITCH LED BY (FROM LEFT TO RIGHT) SHERIDA SPITSE, SHANICE VAN DE SANDEN AND DANIQUE KERKDIJK

DARDILLY, FRANCE (FILE - JULY 2, 2019) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL)

5. SWEDEN PLAYERS, JULIA RODDAR AND MADELEN JANOGY RUNNING

6. PLAYERS WALKING WITH BALL

ZURICH, SWITZERLAND (NOVEMBER 18, 2020) (FIFA - EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NO RESALES.)

7. (SOUNDBITE) (English) CHAIRMAN OF FIFA FOOTBALL STAKEHOLDERS COMMITTEE, VICTOR MONTAGLIANI, SAYING:

"Well, I think we've seen women's football has come a long way on the pitch. You know, the last two World Cups have been a tremendous success; TV audiences, attendances. I think we've seen all the proliferation of women's football at the professional level, at the club level, there's transfers now being done and I think it was important for us to catch up from a regulatory standpoint and address some of the issues that haven't been addressed, specifically for women players. So, we thought it was important to set a minimum global standard. Of course, our member associations are free to offer even more protection to the players, but we thought it was very important that we offer some minimum standards as it relates to labour conditions of a female player, specifically, maternity. You know, all and all this regulatory framework, really at the end of the day, underpins conditions that our female players, in the world now, can enjoy a long and healthy career. And this supports them not only as footballers, but it also supports them as parents."

NEW YORK CITY, NEW YORK, UNITED STATES (FILE - JULY 10, 2019) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL)

8. VARIOUS OF U.S. WOMEN'S NATIONAL TEAM CELEBRATING WINNING THE 2019 FIFA WOMEN'S WORLD CUP DURING PARADE

UTRECHT, NETHERLANDS (FILE - AUGUST 7, 2017) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL)

9. NETHERLANDS WOMEN'S TEAM ARRIVING ON A BOAT AND GREETED BY FANS AS THEY CELEBRATE WINNING THE 2017 WOMEN'S EUROPEAN CHAMPIONSHIP

10. (SOUNDBITE) (English) CHAIRMAN OF FIFA FOOTBALL STAKEHOLDERS COMMITTEE, VICTOR MONTAGLIANI, SAYING:

"I think we all agree on the important role a coach plays in football. Individually for a player, within a team atmosphere, even at a club, obviously. But, ironically, we never had specific regulations that protected this employment relationship of a coach in the football world. There's been a lack of legal certainty and a lack of legal protections for coaches. And we felt that we needed to fill this gap at FIFA by introducing new regulations to ensure this labour framework for coaches. More transparency, more legal clarity - and we believe this will help the entire football market, not just specifically the coaches themselves, which is obvious."

CLAIREFONTAINE, FRANCE (FILE - MAY 23, 2019) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL)

11. VARIOUS OF FRANCE WOMEN'S COACH, CORRINE DIACRE, SPEAKING TO PLAYERS DURING TRAINING SESSION

OULLINS, FRANCE (FILE - JULY 2, 2019) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL)

12. VARIOUS OF NETHERLANDS TEAM GROUPED IN CIRCLE, BEING ADDRESSED BY TRAINING STAFF

13. TEAM WARMING UP

14. TEAM COACH SERENA WIEGMAN WATCHING HER TEAM WARMING UP

GIZA, EGYPT (FILE - OCTOBER 19, 2020) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL)

15. FORMER MEMBER OF EGYPT'S WOMEN'S NATIONAL TEAM AND CURRENT COACH OF EGYPTIAN CLUB IDEAL GOLDI, FAIZA HAIDER, RUNNING ON FIELD WITH AS HER SQUAD TRAINS

16. HAIDER RUNNING WHILE SHOOTING BALL AND GIVING INSTRUCTIONS TO PLAYERS

ZURICH, SWITZERLAND (FILE - SEPTEMBER 24, 2015) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL)

17. VARIOUS OF FIFA SIGN

18. VARIOUS OF FIFA FLAGS

ZURICH, SWITZERLAND (FILE - OCTOBER 20, 2015) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL)

19. EXTERIOR OF FIFA HEADQUARTERS

20. FIFA SIGN

ZURICH, SWITZERLAND (FILE - FEBRUARY 29, 2016) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL)

21. EXTERIOR OF FIFA HEADQUARTERS

22. FIFA SIGN

STORY: FIFA is to introduce new regulations to protect the rights of women players, including mandatory maternity leave, world soccer's governing body said on Thursday (November 19).

The reforms have been put forward by FIFA's Football Stakeholders Committee (FSC) and will go to FIFA's Council next month for approval.

While many players in Europe are already protected by employment law in their given countries, FIFA says its aim is to create "new global minimum standards" for female players all over the world, given the rapid emergence of new clubs and leagues globally.

The proposed rules include a mandatory maternity leave of 14 weeks, at a minimum of two thirds of the player's contracted salary and a guarantee that "no female player should suffer a disadvantage as a result of becoming pregnant".

The planned regulations also state that on their return to work after maternity leave, clubs must "reintegrate female players and provide adequate medical and physical support".

Women players' contractual rights were already covered by the existing regulations for all footballers but the changes are a bid to address specific concerns for female players and are viewed as a basic minimum that can be applied in all countries.

The new regulations also seek to address problems for coaches working internationally.

Until now coaches' contracts have been subject to the same regulations as players but FIFA wants to introduce specific language to deal with the rights of coaches.

(Production: Kurt Michael Hall)