Unions representing Disneyland workers question July reopening: ‘Not yet convinced it is safe’

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A coalition of unions representing thousands of workers at Disneyland theme park in Anaheim, Calif., said in a letter to California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) that it is “not yet convinced it is safe to reopen the park” on July 17.

“Unfortunately, despite intensive talks with the company, we are not yet convinced it is safe to reopen the parks,” the Coalition of Resort Labor Unions said.

While the coalition lauded Disney for some measures, including paying workers’ salaries and benefits after the parks closed in April due to the coronavirus pandemic, it said the reopening plan doesn’t adequately address COVID-19 testing for employees.

A Disney spokeswoman responded by stating talks on properly reopening in a way that satisfies all parties involved are still ongoing.

“The safety and well-being of our cast members and guests are at the forefront of our planning, and we look forward to continued dialogue with our unions on the extensive health and safety protocols,” Disneyland spokeswoman Liz Jaeger said, adding that the resort’s protocols followed guidance from public health officials.

The letter comes as Walt Disney Co., one of the world’s largest media conglomerates, has lost an estimated $1 billion in its parks, experiences and products segment this year. The Disneyland theme park in Anaheim, which opened in 1955, includes its California Adventure Park.

The coronavirus death toll in California, the most populated U.S. state with nearly 40 million people, is 5,517, according to Johns Hopkins University.

–This report was updated at 2:26 p.m.

Tags Coronavirus COVID-19 Disney Disneyland Gavin Newsom
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