Allyson Felix feels disrespected by Nike
New York- Olympic sprinter Allyson Felix was asked by Nike to be in an female empowerment ad. The ask came when she was negotiating maternity protection.
"I was like, this is just beyond disrespectful and tone-deaf," Felix told Time magazine in a profile piece published recently. Felix's contract with Nike expired in December 2017. At the time of her negotiating a new deal with the brand, she was pregnant. Felix said Nike offered her a 70% pay cut in the new contract and failed to support maternity protection, which was something she requested in her contract.
"Nike sometimes, they feel like you don't have another option," Felix told Time. "So they can get away with stuff like that because, where are you going to go? I think that's how I was always perceived: 'She's never going to say anything. She's never going to speak out.'"
Felix left Nike and signed a deal with Athleta. The company is a women focused apparel brand. Since then Nike has expanded its payment protection for pregnant women and new mothers.
"We regularly have conversations with our athletes regarding the many initiatives we run around the world," Nike said. "Nike has supported thousands of female athletes for decades. We have learned and grown in how to best support our female athletes."
Felix will be racing on the track at her fifth Olympic Games in just a few weeks. She already has nine Olympic medals to her name, and could potentially add a 10th to her USA Track & Field career.