Walt Disney World and Unions Reach Agreement on Cast Member Pay Increase

After a long back and forth, Walt Disney World and the UNITE HERE! Local 362 unions have finally come to an agreement regarding a new contract, according to the Orlando Sentinel.

What’s Happening:

  • The new contract, set for a vote on Wednesday, March 29th, would increase the minimum wage of its members to $18 an hour by the end of the year.
  • There would be a new minimum of $17 for new and existing cast members upon contract ratification.
  • The proposed contract would then incrementally increase hourly pay for full-time workers by $5.50 over the next five years.
  • The new deal would give full-time employees a $2 hourly raise upon ratification, $1 of which is retroactive to October.
  • Workers will reach $18 an hour with another $1 pay bump in December under the agreement.
  • The deal is expected to be ratified next week.
  • The unions, which represent around 45,000 of Walt Disney World’s cast members, have been negotiating a new contract since August 24th, 2022.
  • The deal follows an announcement from Universal Orlando, who recently raised their employee starting wage to $17 an hour.

What They’re Saying:

  • Unite Here Local 362 President Eric Clinton said: “This is a historic contract settlement. Both sides should feel proud of the hard work that went into it, and for our members, this will be an increase in their quality of life.”
  • Jeff Vahle, President of Walt Disney World Resort: “Our cast members are central to Walt Disney World’s enduring magic, which is why we are pleased to have reached this tentative agreement. Disney is proud to offer an industry-leading employment package that includes comprehensive benefits and affordable medical coverage, in addition to 100 percent paid tuition for higher education for hourly employees through the Disney Aspire program. With the support of the unions, we anticipate cast members will approve this new agreement.”
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