Disney has announced that all cast members whose jobs “aren’t necessary at this time” will be furloughed later this month.
The short-term furlough process will begin on April 19, and will impact executive, salaried, and non-union hourly cast members based in the U.S., with the exception of those whose roles or projects are needed to maintain operations during the closure period. Disney is setting up meetings with unions as part of their collective bargaining agreements for unionized cast members.
UPDATE – April 11, 2020: Disney has reached agreements the unions representing more than 40,000 cast members, and they will also be furloughed starting April 19. Each union at Disneyland and Walt Disney World worked deals with Disney for the cast members to retain health insurance and other benefits.
Those impacted will remain Disney employees through the duration of the furlough period, and once the period ends, they will get to return to their same roles and locations. Furloughed employees will receive full healthcare benefits during this timeframe; Disney will pay both the employee and employer weekly benefit contributions. Those enrolled in Disney Aspire will still be able to access their education program.
In addition, cast members with available paid time off can choose to use some or all of it at the start of the furlough period, and once the furlough begins, they will be eligible to receive an extra $600 per week in federal compensation through the $2 trillion economic stimulus bill alongside state unemployment insurance.
Before this announcement, cast members were set to be paid through April 18. There is no reopening date set for either Disneyland Resort or Walt Disney World Resort at this time.