Disney Parks is continuing its ongoing commitment to inclusion by updating The Four Keys while also modifying The Disney Look to allow more personal expression.
The Fifth Key:
- For over 50 years, Disney has utilized a simple set of prioritized operating guidelines for Cast Members known as “The 4 Keys.”
- A fifth key of Inclusion has been added as a way to make it clear that Disney values all people and they are appreciated for their unique life experiences, perspectives, and cultures.
- The fifth key will be located in the center of the previous keys, which Disney says represents Inclusion being at the heart of everything they do:
- The Inclusion Key was the result of 2019 brainstorming sessions with Disney’s Business Employee Resource Groups that were focused on inclusivity and belonging.
- The Inclusion Key can be seen in action through various initiatives:
- New and Updated Experiences: Soul of Jazz, Jungle Cruise modifications, new Princess and the Frog attraction.
- Inclusive Products: Adaptive Halloween costumes, Soul collection, Rainbow merchandise
- Mentorship: Disney Dreamers Academy, Ongoing partnerships with HBCUs
- Supplier Diversity: Working with diverse suppliers across the organization.
Disney Look Updates:
- Cast Members at the Disneyland Resort, Walt Disney World Resort, Disney Cruise Line and U.S. resorts away from a theme park will soon have more flexibility with the “Disney Look,” a set of guidelines for Cast Members’ physical appearance.
- Disney says the goal of these changes is to allow Cast Members the opportunity for more personal expression while also fostering greater inclusivity at their workplace.
- The last time these guidelines were amended was in 2020 and they have been periodically updated throughout the years based on evolving workplace expectations and feedback from their cast.
- While Cast Members will have some more opportunities for self expression, it is believed that they will still be expected to perform their role in the show in a way that reinforces the theming of their location.
Below are some of the changes done to the Disney Look and are applicable to all genders.
- This new set of updates will allow Cast Members to have visible tattoos, with restrictions in place to make sure they’re appropriate for a family-friendly environment.
- Visible tattoos are permitted except for those on the face, head, and neck.
- Tattoos must also be no larger than the Cast Member’s hand when fully extended with fingers held together.
- Larger tattoos can be covered up with undergarments, including matching fabric tattoo sleeves.
- Tattoos that depict nudity, offensive language, images, or violate Company policy are not allowed.
- A wider spectrum of nail colors can be used as long as it is the same one solid color on each nail. French manicures are also approved.
Hair Styling and Coloring:
- Hair length is now at the Cast Member’s discretion and can be completely shaved if wanted. Hair below shoulder length needs to be secured if it falls forward covering the face or nametag.
- Hair color can now be changed but must be well maintained and in natural-occurring hues. Blue, green, pink, purple, etc., are not permitted.
- Shaving lines or shapes in the hair is permitted as long as it does not depict offensive words or symbols.
- Must be simple and be worn in matched pairs in gold, silver, or a color that matches the costume.
- Two earrings in each ear are permitted and may be clip-on or pierced, post, hoop, or dangle anywhere on the ear.
- They cannot exceed two (2) inches in length/circumference.
- Body piercings other than ear piercings are not allowed.
- Disney will also be working toward rolling out new gender inclusive costumes within each location. An example of a location that currently has separate male and female versions of a costume is The Haunted Mansion where women dress as maids and men dress as butlers.
What They’re Saying:
- Josh D’Amaro, Chairman, Disney Parks, Experiences and Products: “To be relevant is more than just being creative, we must also be inclusive, making sure that our stories and products reflect the diversity of the world that we live in. And it starts with developing diverse talent and encouraging diversity of thought. This focus on diverse voices is important throughout every area of our organization. It also means using our resources to strengthen the communities where we operate, providing better futures for the next generation of Disney Cast and Guests.”
- Carmen Smith, Executive, Creative Development and Inclusive Strategies, Walt Disney Imagineering: “As part of our ongoing process at Imagineering, we look at the authentic representation of people and cultures in our stories. This is an important part of creating a more inclusive environment for guests from all over the world.”
- Erin Uritus, Out & Equal CEO: “We always look to see companies translate their principles into practice. Disney’s move is a powerful example of a company that is walking the walk on inclusion and belonging. With these changes, cast members can bring their full, authentic selves to their work. More Disney guests will be able to see themselves reflected in the diversity of people across all levels of the company. We are proud to partner with Disney on this effort and many more.”