A majority of Disneyland Resort staffers report they can’t cover basic expenses each month, according to a report. Wochit
In an unprecedented challenge to Walt Disney Co., a coalition of 11 Disneyland unions is calling on the resort to raise its base wage to $20 an hour after a survey of 5,000 workers found many were hard-pressed to pay for food and medical expenses and 11 percent said they experienced homelessness in the past two years.
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According to a 125-page report “Working for the Mouse,” federal census and economic data show the average hourly wage for Disneyland resort workers dropped to $13.36 from $15.80 in inflation-adjusted dollars between 2000 and 2017.
Of 17,000 workers represented by the 11 unions, 85 percent now earn less than $15 an hour with more than half earning less than $12, below the poverty line for a family of four, according to a team of researchers at Occidental College and the Economic Roundtable, a Los Angeles nonprofit that drafted the report at the unions’ behest.
“The Walt Disney Company promotes Disneyland Resort as the ‘happiest place on earth,’” the report asserts. “But for many of the approximately 30,000 people who work there, it is not the happiest place to work. Despite steep increases in the cost of housing and other necessities, Disneyland workers have suffered steady pay cuts and are struggling to make ends meet.”
Disney spokeswoman Suzi Brown declined to respond to the allegations of particular hardships detailed by the union members or to the report’s data on falling wages for both full-time and part-time employees.
She said, however, the average annual wage paid to full-time, hourly employees in 2017 was approximately $37,000. This includes union and non-union employees and the tips that some workers earn.
At the same time, she charged, “This inaccurate and unscientific survey was paid for…