Serena Williams Speaks Out On Equal Pay And Female Barriers In Open Letter, Says Women Should Be Judged On Achievement, Not Gender

Serena Williams is considered one of the best athletes in the world. However, she doesn’t feel as if her pay reflects all of the hard work that she has put into being at the top of her game. In an open letter regarding the gender pay gap controversy, the tennis pro went on a short rant on how women should be paid the same as men for the same amount of work they do.

Williams penned the letter to all women who are striving for excellence in Porter Magazine’s Incredible Women of 2016 issue for the month of December. Her note was posted in full on The Guardian, and it has some strong words about not only equal pay for women but also about breaking the barriers that females face every day.

Serena mentioned how big her dream was the whole time that she was growing up. She noted how important her family was to give her the encouragement that she needed on her way to becoming the best tennis player in the world. She said that she did not strive to be the best in the female category only. The 35-year-old athlete has been training since she was three and has now achieved her dream and much more than she ever thought she would.

She said in the letter that she has always defined herself as being resilient despite the fact that she was an African American woman trying to make it in the top of the tennis circuit. Of course, she has made her dream come true with the hard work that she has put in over the years. However, Serena Williams is angered that she does not get paid the same as the male athletes who train the same as she does.

“People call me one of the ‘world’s greatest female athletes’. Do they say LeBron is one of the world’s best male athletes? Is Tiger? Federer? Why not? They are certainly not female. We should never let this go unchallenged. We should always be judged by our achievements, not by our gender.”

Serena Williams
Serena Williams and Novak Djokovic

Williams wants to see a change in how women are treated. She said changes need to be made in the support and encouragement that females in our society receive. That goes for all women, not only in the world of sports but in any industry that they choose to be in. She is hoping to inspire those who are striving to have their own dreams become a reality.

“It is my hope that my story, and yours, will inspire all young women out there to push for greatness and follow their dreams with steadfast resilience. We must continue to dream big, and in doing so, we empower the next generation of women to be just as bold in their pursuits.”

Serena Williams has received plenty of support from others, both men and women, in her sport. One of them is tennis legend Billie Jean King, who mentioned how proud she is to have the winner of 22 Grand Slams fighting for women’s equal rights. Others are also coming out to lend their support for what she wrote in the letter as well.

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Not only is she speaking up on behalf of all women, but Serena has also danced onstage with another strong female, Beyonce, during one of her concerts recently. Time reported how anxious she was to do that, even more so than playing in tennis tournaments. She had sat down recently with Ellen DeGeneres to chat about her experience with the “Lemonade” singer and to talk about the Yetunde Price Resource Center, which is dedicated to her late half-sister who killed in a drive-by shooting in 2003.

Despite the fact that Serena Williams has had to fight her way to the top, she has achieved success in many different areas and is also given a chance to lend her voice to the concerns that she feels strongly about. She will continue to fight for equal pay for women and to enable and empower the next generation of females to make their dreams come true.

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