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Walt Disney World Workers Reach Tentative Agreement For Raise, Child Bonding Leave

Deadline 3/24/2023 Bruce Haring
© Provided by Deadline

Walt Disney World workers have reached a tentative agreement with Disney for a pay raise to $18/hour for existing workers by the end of this year. The union will now recommend workers vote to approve the agreement.

The agreement comes after union members rejected an offer last month of $17 per hour as the minimum wage.

“Securing an $18 minimum hourly rate this year, increasing the overall economic value of Disney’s original offer, and ensuring full back pay for every worker are the priorities union members were determined to fight for,” said Matt Hollis, president of the Services Trades Council Union (STCU), in a statement Thursday.

The deal will give all theme park workers a raise, according to the union and the company. The union said raises will range from $5.50 to $8.60 an hour by the end of the contract.

The company said the contract would guarantee a minimum of $17 an hour for new and existing employees upon ratification, and at least $18 an hour by the end of the year for current employees.

Raises will be retroactive to October 2022, according to the union, which also said that by the end of the contract in October 2026, the minimum wage will be $20, and pay for housekeepers, dishwashers, cooks, chefs assistants and bus drivers will range from $22 an hour to $28.60 an hour.

Additionally, the union won eight weeks of paid child-bonding leave, a new benefit.

Jeff Vahle, President of Walt Disney World Resort, issued a statement on the tentative agreement.

“Our Cast Members are central to Walt Disney World’s enduring magic, which is why we are pleased to have reached this tentative agreement.”

A large group of Walt Disney World workers and their allies marched outside park facilities earlier this month, chanting, “Walt Disney workers need a raise!” The event was dubbed the “Rally for a Raise” by organizers.

Many of the protesters come from a coalition of six unions representing close to 42,000 WDW cast members. The coalition and Disney have been negotiating a new contract since the old one expired last October 1.

The company noted that its employment package includes health care, paid vacation and sick time, overtime opportunities, discount offers, and options for development and advancement. 

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