Service Trades Council Union issues statement on Walt Disney World layoffs

29 days ago in "The Walt Disney Company"

Following the news of Disney laying off 28000 Cast Members at its domestic parks, the Service Trades Council Union has issued a statement.

The 6 unions of the STCU represent 43,000 Cast Members at Walt Disney World.

We were disappointed to learn that the Covid-19 crisis has led Disney to make the decision to layoff Cast Members.

Unlike at the other theme parks and hotels in Central Florida, Disney workers have a voice at the table because of our Union. We have begun negotiations with the Company about this news and its impact to Union members.

How many full-time and part-time Cast Members will be affected, how long health insurance and recall rights will continue and many other issues crucial to Cast Members are on the table.

As soon as more information becomes available, we will notify our members.

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Article Posted: Sep 29, 2020 / 6:36pm ET
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GymLeaderPhil1 hour ago

I apologize in advance if I didn’t post this in the right place on the forums here at WDWMAGIC, but I don’t think there’s a place intended for eating the rich threads yet. TWDC has seen it’s share of problems since they’ve gone public: Death of Walt. Oil crisis. First downturn of the traditional animation studio. Take over attempts in the 80s. Frank Wells’ death. 9/11. Second downturn of the traditional animation studio. All of the SaveDisney stuff. 2008 housing and financial crisis. ESPN profitability issues. Shanghai. Scatter in some poor performing business ideas like regional Disney locations, bad acquisitions, and costly underwhelming parks that performed poorly. Here’s TWDC stock history since January 1962: Meanwhile, through a combination of US government inaction and policies made internally by those who hold onto the money at a given line of business, those in power have created a system where low and middle class workers wages are largely stagnant. Cost of living is still growing. Complete financial inequality versus the highest earners. There’s a ton of charts about this here. Given the disadvantages these employees face, time and time again whenever Disney faces an economic downturn - regardless if it was an act of nature or the ineptitude of management - why are they the first to suffer? Why are they disposable? God forbid TWDC would have to wait until cash is in hand to grow their business or acquire another network/studio/franchise/brand. God forbid someone who has the means to invest money into the stock market have to take a hit when things at TWDC go south. God forbid a TWDC executive, chief officer, president, or board member have to suffer for their inability to protect the low level plebes who work for them.

flynnibus2 hours ago

Then in your eyes, What was the purpose of highlighting those expenditures by the senator? she directly attributes the moves to “weakening” the company’s fiscal position. And if the money wasn’t spent, what do you think she infers it should have been used for? hint: the answer is there in black&white in the first quote block where she directly attributes this behavior to Disney’s need to make changes during the pandemic.

TrainChasers2 hours ago

I disagree. We are reading things differently. But that’s ok. :)

flynnibus2 hours ago

No? Let's quote the Senator directly from her letter... In the years leading up to this crisis, your company prioritized the enrichment of executives and stockholders through hefty compensation packages , and billions of dollars’ worth of dividend payments and stock buyback, all of which weakened Disney’s financial cushion and ability to retain and pay its front-line workers amid the pandemic The September 29th announcement describes reducing staff as a “very difficult decision,” resulting from the “the prolonged impact of COVID-19 on our business.” However, this explanation fails to acknowledge Disney’s short-sighted business decisions that reduced its capital, including (1) spending billions of dollars to repurchase its own shares over the last decade, (2) rewarding its shareholders through billions of dollars in dividend payments, and (3) showering its top company executives with over-the-top compensation packages and salaries — which reportedly were restored several weeks before the September layoff announcement. Disney has spent tens of billions of dollars on share buybacks in recent years, spending $47.9 billion repurchasing its own common stock from 2009-2018 – a practice that is known to turn excess company cash into higher stock prices for the benefit of shareholders." In addition to stock buybacks, Disney has similarly rewarded its shareholders through dividend payments, further depleting its capital reserves in the time leading up to the pandemic. In FY 2018 and FY 2019, the last two fiscal years prior to the pandemic, Disney spent $5.4 billion in dividend payments – a practice that was publicly criticized in April of this year as the company cut the pay of 100,000 workers 26 before payments were finally suspended by its board of directors No sir.. that's EXACTLY what she was trying to criticize and paint as somehow 'weakening' Disney's financial ability to weather this storm. Never once acknowledging the reality of... layoffs happening because of NO WORK

TrainChasers2 hours ago

that’s not at all what she said.

flynnibus2 hours ago

No - she's asking why Disney didn't stockpile money like scrooge mcduck for the last 4 years so they could be ready to face a complete shutdown. She criticized their dividend (aka - returning profits to the owners) and stock by backs (building owner value) - not because of their fiscal soundness or investment worth - but because it wasn't just giving all the money to employees... who YEARS later, due to no fault of the company itself, had their roles put in grave danger due to a GLOBAL EVENT. Yes - please Disney... please explain to the senator why you didn't foresee this and why on earth you'd give billions in profits to your OWNERS. WHY DISNEY? WHY?

JakeSpadaro2 hours ago

Our leaders should’ve handled the pandemic better and Disney probably wouldn’t be needing to lay off 28,000 cast members. While Disney’s choices were not in the best interests of its front line cast, as it almost never is, they did what they had to do as a business. There’s 100 ways to argue this, so for that reason, I digress.

GymLeaderPhil2 hours ago

Elizabeth Warren has a right to ask why a corporation as large as The Walt Disney Company did not spend their money in a fiscally responsible way. More leaders should be asking the same questions to other companies who value the price of the shares of their business versus the livelihood of their workforce who don’t have stock options/golden parachutes. People who no fault of their own now have to rely on state and federal run services to survive in a pandemic since the industry they work in has been decimated.

JakeSpadaro3 hours ago

While I agree with her sentiments, Disney doesn’t owe her any explanation.

Sirwalterraleigh4 hours ago

That was sarcasm, razor 👇🏻

Sirwalterraleigh4 hours ago

They’re not stupid questions...they’re ones that were never gonna be answered with any legitimacy and your stupid to have asked them

flynnibus5 hours ago

Ask stupid questions and you won’t get honest returns Mrs Senator.

Sirwalterraleigh5 hours ago

It’s still likely 66%-33% ...shame on you for that rookie gaffe, Mono 😬

Polkadotdress5 hours ago

A challenge: find the error in this statement from the article: "More than six months after closing our domestic parks, with the outcome of the pandemic still very uncertain, we had no choice to lay off a number of non-working employees."