ORLANDO — On the day before Thanksgiving, the Walt Disney Co. revealed 4,000 more layoffs are coming in its theme parks division, bringing the total number of announced layoffs to 32,000 across the company.
At least 18,000 of the total jobs lost belong to cast members at Walt Disney World, though the SEC report filed Wednesday did not specify how many of the Orlando resort’s employees are included in the most recent round of layoffs.
This year, the resort has already lost nearly a quarter of its reported 2019 workforce of 77,000.
A spokeswoman for Walt Disney World did not immediately respond to questions about the announced layoffs, including how many Orlando employees would be affected.
The notice said about 32,000 employees in the company’s Parks, Experiences and Products division will be laid off in the first half of the 2021 fiscal year. This number comprises nearly 21% of the 155,000 reported employees of the Walt Disney Co.’s theme parks division as of Oct. 3.
The company partially attributed the job losses to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
“Due to the current climate, including COVID-19 impacts, and changing environment in which we are operating, the Company has generated efficiencies in its staffing, including limiting hiring to critical business roles, furloughs and reductions-in-force,” the filing said.
As of early October, nearly 37,000 theme park employees companywide were furloughed but not scheduled for termination, according to the document.
The Walt Disney Co. employed a total of nearly 203,000 people last month, 80% of which were classified as full-time workers.
Wednesday’s filing is the latest in a series of mass layoffs in Disney’s theme parks division and comes just two months after 28,000 theme park, merchandising and cruise line workers lost their jobs across the company.
Of the 18,000 Disney World cast members affected during that round, 8,857 were part-time union employees, the Orlando Sentinel found.
Eric Clinton, president of Unite Here Local 362, the union that represents the resort’s employees, called the previous round of announced layoffs “devastating.”
Clinton did not immediately respond when asked for comment on the layoffs announced Wednesday.
The Walt Disney Co.’s theme parks division lost about $2.4 billion in revenue this year compared to 2019. Disneyland Resort in California has been closed since March and the Disney Cruise Line has extended its suspension of departures through the end of January.
Disney World continues to operate at a limited capacity since its reopening in July. Earlier this month, Disney CEO Bob Chapek said the resort was raising its occupancy cap from 25 to 35% and expressed optimism at the park’s ability to effectively implement COVID-19 safety protocols while welcoming additional guests.
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Disney World is anticipating a busy holiday season, with 77% of park reservations booked for the next quarter. As of Nov. 12, the resort was booked near capacity over the Thanksgiving weekend, Disney executives said.