USATF to expand maternity benefits


(Reuters) - USA Track & Field (USATF) is expanding maternity benefits for athletes, the national governing body said on Thursday, offering more support for women returning to elite-level competition.

Athletes currently receive stipends and insurance for one year after a pregnancy ends through the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee (USOPC), so long as they intend to return to top-level competition.
"USATF is proud to continue to put athlete support at the forefront of our organization," USATF Chief Operating Officer Renee Chube Washington said in a statement.
"Team USATF’s legacy of success and excellence would not be possible without our female athletes, so offering additional maternity support will help ensure athletes are equipped with all the necessary tools and resources on their journey to gold."
The announcement came after years of advocacy by retired American sprinter Allyson Felix, the most decorated woman in Olympic track and field history, and other athletes for greater maternal support.
Felix called out her sponsor Nike in 2019 for refusing to guarantee she would not be financially penalised if she was not at her best around the time of the birth of her first child.

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