Disney is laying off 28,000 workers from its parks, experiences, and consumer products division, the company announced yesterday. Among the laid-off workers, many of whom have been on furlough since spring, about two-thirds are part-time employees, the Wall Street Journal reports.
While Disney has been able to reopen Disney World in Orlando under restrictions — including requiring face masks unless eating or drinking — plans to reopen Disneyland and California Adventure in Anaheim have been delayed and scrapped amid concerns about rising coronavirus cases. In announcing the layoffs, Disney appeared to partially cast blame on the California state government, saying that the cuts were “exacerbated in California by the State’s unwillingness to lift restrictions that would allow Disneyland to reopen.”
Theme parks represent more than a third of Disney’s revenue, CNBC reports. Per the outlet:
Disney has been hemorrhaging money since the outbreak began. In the second quarter, the company reported a loss of $1 billion in operating income due to the closures of its parks, hotels and cruise lines. In the third quarter, the company reported a steeper loss of $3.5 billion.
The 28,000 workers laid off by Disney will join the tally of 22 million jobs lost in March and April due to the pandemic, with only 9 million regained as of August. More than 205,000 people have died in the U.S. due to COVID-19.