Walt Disney World employees finally have a new contract, as members of the unions which represent over 20,000 of the resort’s full time employees voted to approve the new agreement offered by the company. The vote was far from unanimous, however, as leaders of some of the groups which make up the coalition criticized the measure.
Of the six different unions which together form the Services Trade Council, leaders of two groups – Unite Here! Local 362, and United Food and Commercial Workers Local 1625 – urged members to vote the agreement down, stating that proposed raises weren’t equitably distributed, and that they weren’t large enough to meet the challenges of rising health care costs. But in the end, the measure passed with a vote of 4,987 – 2,099.
However, the other four groups did support the measure and Harris Raynor, president of the Services Trade Council, declared the new contract a “victory.”
The contract is similar on all points to the previous proposals that union members voted down last fall. The biggest distinction is that the new contract offers a $100 bonus to full-time, non-tipped workers who make $8.50 or less.
Disney expressed support for passing of the new measure in a statement offered by Steve Eisenhardt, vice president of labor relations for Disney Parks and Resorts. “We are pleased with the outcome of the vote today. Both the voter turnout and the support of the new contract were tremendous.”