Most of the layoffs will affect those who work at the company’s U.S. theme parks in Florida and California, 67% of whom are part-time employees.
Disney closed its parks across the world earlier this year when COVID-19[feminine[feminine began to spread, and those that reopened were forced to adhere to heightened security measures, including capacity limits.
Its iconic Disneyland Park in California has remained completely closed due to tighter restrictions in the state.
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Josh D’Amaro, president of Disney’s parks unit, spoke about the limited capacity of other parks and the uncertainty over the length of the coronavirus pandemic, which he said was “exacerbated in California by the state’s reluctance to lift restrictions that would allow Disneyland to reopen.”
He added: “We have made the very difficult decision to begin the process of downsizing in our Parks, Experiences and Products segment at all levels.
“Around 28,000 domestic workers will be affected, of which around 67% are part-time.
“Over the past few months we have been forced to make a number of necessary adjustments to our business, and as difficult as that decision is today, we believe that the actions we take will allow us to emerge a more effective and efficient society. operation when we return to normal. ”
In a letter to employees, Mr. D’Amaro called the move “heartbreaking” and said management had tried to avoid job losses by cutting expenses, suspending projects and streamlining operations.
“However, we simply cannot remain fully staffed while operating at such a limited capacity,” he added.
The company had continued to pay health benefits to workers on leave since April, but leaves work differently in the United States and in countries like the United Kingdom.
While those on leave retained benefits such as health insurance, they stopped receiving a salary.
Walt Disney World in Florida employed 77,000 workers before the pandemic, while Disneyland in California employed 32,000 people.
The job losses do not affect the Disney parks in Paris, Hong Kong, Tokyo and Shanghai, all of which have reopened.
It comes after the company reported its first quarterly loss in nearly two decades when it lost $ 4.72 billion (£ 3.68 billion) in the three months leading up to June 27, due to Coronavirus setbacks across the company.
Disney was forced to delay several big budget movie blockbusters, including its upcoming Marvel superhero movie sequel, while its Mulan remake has jumped the big screen in favor of the Disney + streaming service.
Mulan’s release encountered other problems when he was met with calls to boycott because it was shot in parts of China where the government is accused of serious human rights violations.
Despite the financial crisis, last month Disney reportedly ended temporary pay cuts imposed on its senior executives. Deadline said its senior executive pay cuts ended on August 23.