Walt Disney World employees are set to vote on a new contract offer from the company this week. However, unions representing the workers are urging members to vote no.
Disney’s five-year offer, which it claims is its best, would give cast members at least a $ 1-an-hour raise and bring most employees to at least $20 an hour by 2026. The company said that almost half of its employees would get more than a $1-an-hour raise in the first year.
One of the unions, Unite Here, said in a media advisory that “$1 is not enough to pay for the cost-of-living crisis that workers are facing in Central Florida.” Instead, they feel cast members should receive at least a $3-an-hour raise to start.
🚨🚨MEDIA ADVISORY 🚨🚨
📢Thousands of Workers set to Reject Disney’s Contract Offer
🚫After months of negotiations, Disney is proposing raises of only $1 a year for most workers. STCU union members have joined to recommend a “no” vote. #DisneyWorkersNeedaRaise pic.twitter.com/rdcc4NHVJi
— UNITE HERE (@unitehere) January 27, 2023
Andrea Finger, a spokesperson for Disney, called the offer “very strong.” She said the majority of cast members will see increases closer to 33% to 46% throughout the life of the contract.
Pay increases would be retroactive to October 1, when the contract expired, and would provide full-time employees with lump-sum pre-tax payments of about $700.
But all indications point to employees voting no on the current contract offer, with the expectation that Disney will return to the table for further negotiations.
“While Disney insists at the bargaining table that this is the best offer, we know Disney can do better, and Disney knows they must do better,” Matt Hollis, president of the Service Trades Council Union, which is the collection of six union locals that is bargaining with Disney management, said.
Hollis believes that positions that would receive more than a $1 an hour increase are roles the company has needed help filling and where staff shortages exist.