The Government has announced there will be €2.4 million awarded to female inter-county players this year, balancing the funding disparity between male and female players.
Minister of State for Sport Jack Chambers TD has committed to trebling the current level of funding this year, which means camogie and football players will be receiving the same level of grant funding as their male counterparts.
At present, €3m grant funding is annually to male inter-county players, whereas the €700k awarded to female inter-county players is a more team focused grant. This equates to an average of €1,282 per male player, compared to €424 invested for each female.
Minister of State for Sport Jack Chambers has committed to equal funding for male and female inter-county players.— Eoghan Cormican (@cormicaneoghan) May 10, 2021
When asked on RTÉ Radio 1 when will the current imbalance end, he said "this year".
Funding for female inter-county players will treble from €700k to €2.4m.
Speaking on RTE Radio 1’s Today with Claire Byrne, Chambers said he could not defend the previous figures and the increase will take place this year. The funding for male inter-county players will remain the same.
“I am going to do that this year. Incremental progress, when there is such inequality, isn’t enough.
“We’ll be trebling the amount on the women’s side, it’ll go up to about €2.4m. There are slightly less female inter-county players than male but there will be equality in terms of the average of what both get and will both equate to €1,200. That is the right thing to do.’’
Chambers also spoke about the progress being made in other areas and how the funding disparity must come to reflect that.
“We have seen this year the GPA and WGPA merge, underpinned by the principle of equality, and I think that principle has to stand when it comes to the funding of our players. What I propose on doing is that we have €1,200 for both [male and female inter-county player],” said Chambers.
“If you take the Levelling the Field report from the WGPA last year, they referenced the huge difficulty they have around certain expenses. For all our young women and girls who are playing camogie and ladies football, we have to ensure there is no artificial glass ceiling when it comes to sport and I am serious about rectifying that. It is absolutely important that we have parity of esteem and equality of treatment when it comes to funding.”
He concluded the interview by stating how vital this figure is for the new generation.
“It is important for any girl that wants to play for their county that they get that equality of treatment when it comes to state funding. It will enable us to support the welfare of teams in a greater way and also help players around their expenses.”