Walt Disney World's Union Won the Fight to Raise Their Minimum Wage to $15

Cinderella Castle at Florida’s Walt Disney World.
Cinderella Castle at Florida’s Walt Disney World.
Photo: Disney

Thanks to a hard-fought battle between the Walt Disney World workers’ union and Disney, all park, food service, and resort workers will be paid a minimum wage of $15 by 2021.


Talks between the union and Disney began last August with the Service Trades Council Union advocating for a raise to $15, up from $10, which Disney responded to with a proposed raise of merely 25 cents. In the ensuing months, as negotiations continued, Disney withheld guaranteed employee bonuses and later offered to raise the minimum wage to $10.50, prompting workers to protest in response.

After the union continued to push for its initial demands for the pay increase, Disney finally settled on an agreement over the weekend that union members will vote on September 5. Should the union agree to it, pay will jump to $11 per hour by the end of this year and gradually increase to $15 by October of 2021. Workers will get their intended bonuses, according to CNN, which also noted: “The deal also includes an offer to retroactively pay workers an additional 50 cents an hour or 3 percent—whichever is greaterfor all hours worked since September of 2017.”

This is another win for workers, as just this past July unions representing almost 10,000 Disneyland employees won their own fight for a $15 minimum wage.

Disney’s revenue, generated in part by the labor of its parks and resorts workforce, increased by 6 percent in the fourth quarter of 2017 to $4.7 billion.

Charles Pulliam-Moore is an NYC-based culture critic whose work centers on fandom, pop culture, politics, race, and sexuality. He still thinks Cyclops made a few valid points.


This all sounds great, but my inner cynic can’t help but predict that they’re going to see a reduction in shifts, see a lot of layoffs, and in the end, prices for everything from admission to food are going to spike.