Pledge to Play campaign aims to bring equality to the football field

WASHINGTON — When there’s a decision to be made in football, it’s critical that the perspective of the other side be heard. Whether it’s about college football’s playoff or the expansion of the NFL’s regular season to 18 games, some big decisions are coming in the next few years.

“That’s why we’re here, to make sure that they know what the needs are,” Notre Dame assistant coach Emma Hayes said.

Hayes is in Washington this week as part of her “Pledge to Play” campaign. The program is part of the Women in Football Coalition, which is currently focused on getting the game of football back into high schools.

Hayes, who runs the Do Good Sports Foundation, told a panel at the National Press Club on Tuesday night that she wanted to bring her message of equality to the table because of the lack of access girls have in school athletics.

The lead sponsor of “Pledge to Play” is insurance company Liberty Mutual. While the women on the panel were OK with the health standards of the game, they still worry that female football players face a unique and disproportionate risk of injuries, particularly concussions.

“They know the game; they know what it takes to be able to participate. We just want the rules to be consistent for men and women,” Hayes said.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Leave a Comment