Disneyland plans to furlough additional employees in the wake of COVID-19 reopening guidelines from Gov. Gavin Newsom’s administration that have left California theme parks “in limbo” for the foreseeable future.
Disneyland president Ken Potrock announced the furloughs of executive, salaried and hourly workers on Monday, Nov. 9 in a letter to cast members, Disney parlance for employees.
“Since Disneyland resort closed its gates in March, nothing has been more important than fully reopening and getting our cast members back to work,” Potrock wrote. “That’s why it is with heavy hearts we find ourselves in the untenable situation of having to institute additional furloughs for our executive, salaried and hourly cast.”
COVID-19 health and safety reopening guidelines issued by the state could leave Disneyland, Disney California Adventure and other large California theme parks unable to return until early 2021 or next summer. The Downtown Disney outdoor shopping mall reopened in July. Disney California Adventure plans to reopen Buena Vista Street without rides or attractions on Nov. 19 for shopping and dining.
Disney furloughed non-essential employees at its U.S. theme parks in April.
Disney laid off 28,000 employees in September at Disneyland and Walt Disney World. An exact count of the layoffs at the Disneyland resort is not yet available, but an early estimate puts the number at approximately 10,000 employees.
“We expected to be able to open our parks in Anaheim, given our proven ability to operate with responsible health and safety protocols as we have in all of our other theme parks around the world, but unfortunately this has not been the case,” Potrock wrote.