Disneyland Resort employee unions are staging a protest over the rapid reopening plans. The Anaheim, California theme park, along with all other theme parks in the state, has been shut down since the middle of March. At first it seemed they would only be down for a week or two, but that definitely was not the case. Since then, the Walt Disney Company has been hemorrhaging cash, just waiting for things to get back to some kind of normal so they can open up their theme parks again. As of this writing, Disneyland plans to reopen on July 17th.
The Coalition of Resort Labor Unions previously sent an open letter to California Governor Gavin Newsom over concerns about Disneyland opening too soon. It was just announced this morning that Los Angeles County, which is less than an hour from Anaheim, has the most cases in the nation. “Unfortunately, despite intensive talks with the company, we are not yet convinced that it is safe to reopen the parks on Disney’s rapid timetable,” reads the letter signed by 10 union presidents.
Since the letter didn’t accomplish what the Coalition of Resort Labor Unions had originally hoped, they’re staging a protest this weekend. The event will take place from 10am to Noon PST, out in front of Disneyland. The union says they are doing so, “as an action to show our concerns regarding safety.” One of many events tied to the protest has 50 people signed up with 200 interested in attending. When looking at the reactions to the protest, they are mixed, which is to be expected at this point in the game.
A petition, which has nothing to do with the Coalition of Resort Labor Unions, has gained over 50,000 signatures of support to delay the opening of Disneyland and California Adventure. For now, the Downtown Disney area for shopping and dining is scheduled to open on July 9th, with the parks to follow on the 17th. From there, the hotels will all open back up again on the 23rd. While LA County has the most cases in the nation, Anaheim has the most cases in Orange County, so this will all be very interesting when all of the dust begins to settle.
Disneyland and California Adventure will have limited capacity when they reopen. This is going to be really tough for a park that is near capacity on a normal Tuesday during the week. Getting reservations is going to be tough and once outside the park, guests will have to get their temperatures taken before they are even allowed in. Masks are also mandatory for anybody wanting to visit the park, which will also feature new cleaning schedules and safe social distancing protocols. Will it be enough? For now we’ll just have to wait and see. The Hollywood Reporter was one of the first to announce the Disneyland reopening strike this weekend.