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Disney Forced To Furlough Employees

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By Nora Pattugalan

With the recent closures of theme parks, Disney has counted down the days of losing revenue. Crowds and smiles of park goers faded as these locations became ghost towns during the COVID-19 pandemic. Recently announced, Disney is going to furlough thousands of their non-union employees.

Beginning April 19th, Disney will determine which of the nearly two-hundred thousand employees will be furloughed. The parks have been closed since March 15th, with payments still being distributed to employees. At this time, the furlough will enable employees to focus on their own health and wellness.

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The decision to furlough is difficult for any company. For something as large as Disney, they will go through with it, but such employees may keep their health benefits and offerings. Part of the downfall was aided by the forced park closures, travel bans, and lack of visitations. The mass destruction of the Coronavirus affected thousands of businesses worldwide.

As well as the furlough, Bob Chapek who is the CEO of Disney declared a cut in paychecks. Half his paycheck and others will be taken while executive chairman Bob Iger’s forgo his pay.

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Several companies have furloughed employees including cinemas and food chains. The virus slowly limited number of customers and number of workers. The decisions were affected by statewide orders from governors, and the stay-at-home orders from the White House. To combat such virus, social distancing is done hoping to minimize the spread.

Disney’s furlough will affect both theme parks and Disney Store locations. It is not announced which of the employees will be furloughed although their positions may not be necessary at this time.

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A wave of workers across the United States have filed for unemployment due to the uncertainty that COVID-19 brings. Whether individuals work with shorter hours, stay home, or leave altogether, their health during this crisis could be compromised any time.

The decline of jobs in the United States has been troubling for struggling individuals and families. Furlough is one option, but layoff is another which took a toll for businesses nationwide. Research has shown that the job decline has not been as severe since September 2017.

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COVID-19 caused prioritization among first responders, grocery store workers, and custodians. Attempting to clear the air of the virus, people of all ages are advised to thoroughly sanitize and protect themselves. Non-essential workers are losing their jobs left to right, the question of who is essential and who is not is being discussed among businesses everywhere.

Companies like Disney have plenty of non-essential workers although the removal of employees will affect their financial and social status. The future of Disney will thrive post pandemic, this is only temporary.

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