Disney union leaders react to layoff announcement

Walt Disney World remains closed to the public due to the Coronavirus threat on March 23, 2020 in Orlando, Florida. The United States has surpassed 43,000 confirmed cases of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) and the death toll climbed to at least 514. (Phot

New documents from the state show nearly 6,700 non-union Disney workers will be laid off starting Dec. 4.

“It’s just devastating,” Teamsters Local 385 Trustee Mike McElmury. “I don’t know if these families will recover.”

This comes just a day after the company announced it will be laying off 28,000 part-time and full-time workers between its parks in Florida and California.

“It’s devastating to our communities to our local union to these families,” McElmury said. “A lot of them are on furlough now but now they’re going to be permanently laid off.”

RELATED: Disney to lay off nearly 6,700 non-union workers in Central Florida

FOX 35 News talked with the Trustee of Teamsters Local 385 union which represents about 5,000 Disney cast members, bus drivers, and laundry workers.

He estimates about 1,800 of his workers will be laid off. He said he got a letter from Disney on Tuesday that says those layoffs will begin Nov. 1.

“They’re scared,” McElmury said. “Not sure what to do, where to look for reemployment. Everyone is hoping it is going to come back and hopefully soon.”

His union will be meeting with Disney representatives soon to negotiate benefits for the workers who will be losing their jobs, fighting for things like severance packages and extended healthcare.

“We’re not going to just sit back and let it happen without fighting for everybody,” McElmury said.

He said they’re also working to find their workers new jobs, too.