Despite a spike in Florida COVID-19 cases, large groups are rushing to the phased reopening of Walt Disney World Resort (NYSE: DIS), this Saturday at 9 a.m. Although three parks in Asia have already opened this will be the first in the United States to resume operations.
Due to the ongoing global pandemic rules and regulations have been established to function in the safest manner possible. Guests must sign up online, register the members of their group, specify the day they will be attending the park and review and confirm their reservations. The new procedure is in place to minimize employee and customer interaction as well as long crowded lines.
Tickets went live Thursday for Saturdays reopening of Magic Kingdom Park and Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park. EPCOT and Disney’s Hollywood Studios are set to open July 15.
Nevertheless, it is said employees are not fully at ease. The Actors’ Equity Association, in charge of 750 Walt Disney World workers, pressed for COVID-19 testing in order for employees to commence working. According to Equity, Disney has “locked out” its union members, as a means of protesting the imposed requirement.
A Disney spokesperson wrote an email to Deadline saying, “Seven unions signed agreements to have their employees return to work, the Actors’ Equity rejected our safety protocols and have not made themselves available to continue negotiations, which is unfortunate. We are exercising our right to open without Equity performers.”
Despite the risks Disney is attempting to take all precautionary measures including temperature screening for both guests and employees, increased in-dining cleaning, non character interactions and social distancing while in lines and on rides.