After the Disneyland Resort postponed the reopening of their theme parks and resorts, the Actors’ Equity Association – the U.S. labor union that represents more than 51,000 professional actors and stage managers – released a statement urging Walt Disney World to consider doing the same as new COVID-19 cases in the state of Florida continue to break daily records.
It’s also important to note that Disneyland’s decision to delay their reopening came due to theme park guidelines not being released by the state of California, which is not expected to do so until sometime after the 4th of July. Disneyland’s statement also said that with the short notice, they would not have enough time to bring back Cast Members and restart their business.
Not only is Actors’ Equity asking for Walt Disney World to delay their reopening, but they are also looking for Disney to provide regular Coronavirus testing for Cast Members who cannot wear personal protective equipment due to the nature of their positions.
Mary McColl, executive director of Actors’ Equity Association, stated the following:
If Disneyland has postponed, it is unclear how Walt Disney World can responsibly move toward reopening when coronavirus cases are much worse in Florida. For weeks, we have made it clear to Disney that testing is a fundamental part of maintaining a safe and healthy environment for everyone, from the guests to the cast. It is deeply disturbing that while coronavirus cases in Florida surge, Disney is refusing to provide regular testing to one of the few groups of workers in the park who by the very nature of their jobs, cannot use personal protective equipment. Now is the time for Disney to pause, focus on the science and put the safety of their actors and stage managers first by making regular testing available.