Disney Co. Responds to Abigail Disney—Harshly

Calls her undercover report 'egregious' hyperbole and an unfair 'stunt'
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 17, 2019 4:15 PM CDT
Disney Co. Slams Abigail Disney's 'Stunt'
In this May 10, 2012 file photo, Abigail E. Disney appears at the New York Women's Foundation breakfast in New York.   (Marion Curtis/Starpix via AP, File)

The Walt Disney Co. says it typically does not comment on "baseless reports," but it's making an exception—for a Disney. Abigail Disney, granddaughter of Disneyland co-founder Roy O. Disney, recently made an undercover visit to the California theme park and said she was left "so livid" by hearing from workers who are making $15 per hour who, she says, told her things like, "I don't know how I can maintain this face of joy and warmth when I have to go home and forage for food in other people's garbage." But the Walt Disney Co. is pushing back strongly against her account, CNN reports. "The men and women who make Disney parks such a special experience for millions of people are dedicated, hardworking and proud, and we will continue to listen to, empower and reward them," the company said. "That's what this company has done throughout its history and will continue to do in the future."

The company added that it wouldn't let Disney's "particularly egregious" exaggerations stand: "This widely reported stunt is a gross and unfair exaggeration of the facts that is not only a misrepresentation, but also an insult to the thousands of employees who are part of the Disney community. We strongly disagree with this characterization of our employees and their experience at Disney," said a Disney spokesperson, who also noted the company pays park workers, on average, $19.50 per hour; offers a program that pays for workers to earn degrees; and offers benefits including subsidized childcare, leave policies, and access to pharmacies and clinics. Abigail Disney is not involved in Walt Disney Co. operations. (She has also railed against Disney CEO Bob Iger's "insane" compensation.)

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