Disney increases planned layoffs to 32,000 as company struggles with limited park visitors

Business

A person walks into an entrance to Disneyland in Anaheim on Sept. 30, 2020, after Disney said it was laying off 28,000 workers amid the toll of the COVID-19 pandemic on theme parks. (Mario Tama / Getty Images)

BURBANK, Calif. (NewsNation Now) — Walt Disney Company said Wednesday it would lay off about 32,000 workers, primarily at its theme parks, as the company struggles with limited customers due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The layoffs will be in the first half of 2021, the company said in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. It’s an increase from the 28,000 it announced in September.

A spokesman for Disney confirmed that the latest figures include the 28,000 layoffs announced earlier.

“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 company said in the filing. “As part of these actions, the employment of approximately 32,000 employees primarily at Parks, Experiences and Products will terminate in the first half of fiscal 2021.”

Earlier this month, Disney said it was furloughing additional workers from its theme park in Southern California due to uncertainty over when the state would allow parks to reopen.

Disney’s theme parks in Florida and those outside the United States reopened earlier this year without seeing new major coronavirus outbreaks but with strict social distancing, testing and mask use.

Disneyland Paris was forced to close again late last month when France imposed a new lockdown to fight a second wave of the coronavirus cases.

The company’s theme parks in Shanghai, Hong Kong and Tokyo remain open.

Reuters contributed to this report.

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