Disney Workers: Please Don’t Reopen U.S. Theme Parks


A petition started by Disney World workers on Saturday asking the resort to delay its reopening has garnered thousands of signatures, while workers at the Disneyland Resort on the West Coast have undertaken a similar effort with coronavirus cases spiking in many areas of the United States.
The Disney World petition had nearly reached its goal of 4,000 signatures by Monday, with the world’s most visited vacation destination scheduled to start reopening its Central Florida theme parks next month.
Workers at Disneyland have taken efforts even farther, as union leaders representing 17,000 employees sent a letter to California Gov. Gavin Newsom last week saying that rising coronavirus cases there make it unsafe for the resort to reopen on its planned date of July 17.
California on Monday reported a new high in hospitalizations, beating out a record that had stood since April, while Florida reported several record daily increases in coronavirus cases last week.
Universal Studios and SeaWorld, two competing theme parks in the Orlando area, have already opened, with tightened safety and hygiene guidelines.
As of now, Disney World plans to reopen its Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom parks on July 11, followed by EPCOT and Hollywood Studios on July 15.
Disneyland has been closed since March 14 and Disney World since March 16, leading to the furloughs of some 100,000 workers. But Disney has already started to reopen some of its resort properties, including its parks in Shanghai and Hong Kong. In Florida, it’s also reopened its Disney Springs shopping area—previously called Downtown Disney—and reopened its Fort Wilderness Resort and Campground on Monday.

BIG NUMBER

58 million — That’s how many visitors Disney World says to make a trip to the resort in an average year.

WHAT TO WATCH FOR

When Disney parks do reopen, they will do so with greatly enhanced hygiene procedures and will require temperature screenings for guests with all visitors above the age of 2 required to wear a face mask.