WALT DISNEY WORLD

Disney Reaches Deal with Walt Disney World Unions on Safeguards for Returning to Work

The entrance to Disney World is deserted on the first day of closure as theme parks in the Orlando area suspend operations for two weeks in an effort to curb the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19).
Paul Hennessy/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images
  • The measures include mandatory masks for workers and guests and social distancing practices.
  • Disney has announced that some shops and restaurants in the Disney Springs shopping area in Orlando will open on May 20, but the company has not set a reopening date for any of its four theme parks in the area.

Walt Disney and unions representing workers at Florida’s Walt Disney World have reached an agreement on safeguards to protect employees from coronavirus, a union statement said on Thursday, removing one of the company’s hurdles to reopening its popular theme parks.

The measures include mandatory masks for workers and guests and social distancing practices, according to a statement from the Service Trades Council Union, which represents thousands of workers at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida.

Disney has announced that some shops and restaurants in the Disney Springs shopping area in Orlando will open on May 20, but the company has not set a reopening date for any of its four theme parks in the area.

The company closed its parks around the world starting in late January to help prevent the novel coronavirus from spreading. It reopened Shanghai Disneyland to a limited number of visitors on Monday.

The agreement with the Walt Disney World unions also calls for plastic barriers and touchless transactions at cash registers, temperature checks for guests, and other measures, the STCU statement said.

Employees who contract COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, will receive paid time off to quarantine, the statement said.

Disney shares were trading 1.9% higher at $104.90 in afternoon trading on the New York Stock Exchange

This story first appeared on CNBC.com. More from CNBC:

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