Disneyland Unions Urge Governor Newsom to Allow Parks to Reopen in Orange Tier

The Disneyland Resort has been closed for over seven months, and California Governor Gavin Newsom has noted that the state is in no “hurry” to issue reopening guidance for the theme park industry.


Several unions who collectively represent approximately 10,000 Disneyland Cast Members have come together to pen a letter to the Governor, urging him to reopen the parks.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the letter was signed by the following seven unions: Workers United Local 50, UFCW 324, I.A.T.S.E 504, BCTGM Local 83, I.E.S.A, AFM Local 7 and UNITE HERE Local 11. The letter expresses the unions’ satisfaction with the work Disneyland had done to create a safe reopening environment, which included social distancing, face mask policies, and providing PPE and testing sites to Cast Members.

Disneyland Park Social Distancing Markers

The unions address the Governor directly in the letter which states, “We wrote you in June 2020 to tell you that we were not yet convinced that it was safe to reopen the parks on Disney’s timetable. Since then, Disney has taken safety measures we advocated, and engaged with their workers’ representatives, that our original position has changed.”

Health and safety signage outside California Adventure

The letter continues on to say,, “we believe a path exists where Disneyland would be able to open safely when Orange County moves into the Orange tier.” Currently, Orange County is in the Red tier, one level above Orange. In order to advance to the Orange tier, the county would need a new case rate between 1-3.9 per 100,000 residents, and a positive test rate between 2-4.9%. The county would also need a Health Equity Metric that also meets the Orange tier thresholds.

California’s reopening tiers (source: covid19.ca.gov)

Previously, the state of California had an early draft of the theme park guidelines that reportedly required a county to be in the least-restrictive Yellow tier before theme parks could reopen. When that draft was close to being released, the theme park industry urged the state for more time in order to work together.

Disney California Adventure

That back-and-forth was followed up by the state sending teams to visit the
“larger” theme parks in California as well as theme parks in Florida, which may have concluded last week. In a news conference yesterday, Governor Newsom hinted that an update to the theme park guidance may be announced today.

Click here to learn more about the reported details of California’s early draft of them theme park reopening guidelines! 

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