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Disney Reaches Deal With Union: No Full Time Employees To Be Laid Off, But 8,800 Part Time Employees Will Lose Their Jobs

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Disney World Magic Kingdom Castle on 7/9/2020

Photo: Allison Varney

The union representing Walt Disney World employees says it has reached a deal with the company that avoids layoffs for full time cast members. More than eight thousand part time employees, though, will lose their jobs. 

The Service Trade Council Union represents about 43,000 Walt Disney World employees. More than 25,000 of them have been recalled to their jobs during Disney’s phased reopening. 

The union said Disney had planned to change the employment status from furlough to layoff for 5,299 full time and 8,857 part time cast members. 

After several days of negotiations, the union said no full time employees will be laid off, and the company agreed that there will be no permanent layoffs. 

Anyone who is laid off in the future will retain their seniority, rate of pay, and the right to return to their previous job at Disney until October 1st, 2022. That means they’ll be given priority to be rehired before Disney hires new employees off the street. 

Some 8,800 part time employees who have been on furlough will be laid off though, with park attendance and resort occupancy not yet back to pre-pandemic levels. 

“As incredibly difficult as it is to take this action, this agreement helps us preserve many full-time jobs,” said a Disney spokesperson in a statement.

“For those affected by this decision, we thank you for all your dedication. While we don’t know when the pandemic will be behind us, we are confident in our resilience, and we hope to welcome back Cast Members where we can.”

Disney announced last week that 28,000 of its employees across the country would be laid off. The company notified state and local officials that it would let go 6,700 non-union employees beginning in December. 

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About Matthew Peddie

Matt Peddie