Disney heiress accuses company of putting workers’ health at risk

Entertainment

ANAHEIM, Calif. (CNN) — Abigail Disney is once again taking the gloves off in her critique of the family business, accusing management of putting profit ahead of workers’ health and safety.

“Disney is doing here is what businesses across the board have been doing for too, too long. I can’t sit silent when profits run in front of workers and people,” she said in an interview on Wednesday with CNN’s Richard Quest.

The granddaughter of Walt Disney’s brother, Roy Disney, has become an outspoken critic of Walt Disney Co. and an advocate for workers’ rights.

On Wednesday, she said the company isn’t doing enough Covid-19 testing to protect vulnerable staff at the newly reopened Disney World park.

“If you in the C-suite look upon an hourly worker at minimum wage as your equal, as a human being with the same rights and dignity that you have, I think you’d be very slow to … ask them to come in with asthma, with diabetes, with all sorts of pre-existing conditions and not provide them the testing that they are asking for. “

A spokesperson for Disney Parks pushed back against Abigail Disney’s accusation.

“While everyone is entitled to their own opinions, they are not entitled to their own facts, and the media is doing a horrible disservice to the public by giving a platform to someone who lacks any expertise, insight, or credibility on any of these matters at time when the public needs factual and reliable information. The facts are that we are taking a responsible approach, with specific protocols in place considering the guidance of various governmental authorities and health agencies, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). These health and safety measures include a mandatory mask policy, temperature screenings, increased cleaning and disinfecting, and capacity restrictions to promote social distancing.”

This is hardly the first time that Abigail Disney, a documentary filmmaker and activist, has publicly called out the company’s C-suite. Earlier this year, she slammed the company’s decision to furlough hundreds of thousands low-paid workers during the coronavirus shutdown.

And last year, she criticized then-CEO Bob Iger’s $66 million pay — at more than 1,400 times that of the median salary of a Disney employee — as “insane.”

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