Disney has released a statement from Josh D’Amaro – Chairman, Disney Parks, Experiences and Products – about layoffs impacting the segment. Unfortunately, D’Amaro says that layoffs will impact approximately 28,000 employees.
Below is the complete statement, which was also released on Twitter.
“In light of the prolonged impact of COVID-19 on our business, including limited capacity due to physical distancing requirements and the continued uncertainty regarding the duration of the pandemic – exacerbated in California by the State’s unwillingness to lift restrictions that would allow Disneyland to reopen – we have made the very difficult decision to begin the process of reducing our workforce at our Parks, Experiences and Products segment at all levels, having kept non-working Cast Members on furlough since April, while paying healthcare benefits. Approximately 28,000 domestic employees will be affected, of which about 67% are part-time. We are talking with impacted employees as well as to the unions on next steps for union-represented Cast Members.
Over the past several months, we’ve been forced to make a number of necessary adjustments to our business, and as difficult as this decision is today, we believe that the steps we are taking will enable us to emerge a more effective and efficient operation when we return to normal. Our Cast Members have always been key to our success, playing a valued and important role in delivering a world-class experience, and we look forward to providing opportunities where we can for them to return.”
These are incredibly dark times for Disney. With D’Amaro noting that the majority of impacted cast members are in part time roles, one has to assume that guest-serving positions will be gutted. That probably doesn’t bode well for entertainment offerings, among other amenities, at the parks and resorts.
Disney is in a difficult position where they have to make changes with Disneyland closed and Walt Disney World operating at a fraction of its usual capacity. They’ll likely bring back a large number of jobs once things stabilize, but many roles – such as The Grand Floridian Resort Orchestra – are gone for good.