Guests Shocked at Further Displays of Child Abuse at Disney Parks

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Child wearing Mickey Mouse hat with parents in front of Cinderella Castle

Credit: Disney

Walt Disney spent nearly every dollar he made just to make children happy. Since the dawn of the brand, Disney has been associated with childhood bliss, which can certainly be said for places like Disneyland and Walt Disney World. If that’s the case, why are there so many reports of young Guests being abused and assaulted coming from the Disney Parks?

A mom holds a little boy in front of Sleeping Beauty castle.
Credit: Disney

We’ve seen a lot of reports of bad Guest behavior in the past two years or so, but parents actively harming their children at Disney World is a whole new level of low. From verbal abuse to outright assault, parents are proving to be a persistent problem at the Disney Parks. So why isn’t anyone doing anything about it?

Killing the Magic

lady tremaine disney world
Credit: Disney

It’s not just the fact Guests are continuously coming back from their trips having witnessed parents hitting or harming their kids, but the fact so many people do little to nothing about it. A recent post on r/WaltDisneyWorld details some of the horrible acts of violence witnessed against kids, and the testimonials are downright heartbreaking.

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u/Ga11agher shares,

“I remember being in line at sleepy Hollow and a mom ripped her kid out of the stroller and slapped him a few times, then slammed him back in the stroller. She stormed off and shortly thereafter Disney security followed in her direction. I’m a parent and understand being extremely frustrated at times but I could never see myself getting to that level…”

And u/ImAlwaysWrite shares a more personal account when they add,

“Some of the worst abuse I experienced as a kid was from my mom on our trip to Disney World. I think abusers feel resentment towards their kids on holidays. I guess they have regrets about being parents and take it out on the kid.”

These are just two accounts of abuse either seen or witnessed at the theme parks, and the thread is currently over 200 replies long. With so much being reported and witnessed, where does Disney stand on this epidemic of outright attacks on kids?

A Disney Parks Disaster

cinderella-castle-dark-red
Credit: u/deldredge2008

One thing that’s important to remember is that while Disney’s Cast Members and security teams are absolutely stellar at making magic for others, they are still limited in terms of actual state laws. Disney’s staff has gone forward when abuse has been witnessed and reported, but the sad fact is that there is only so much they can legally do.

Identifying themselves as a Cast Member, u/Mysterious-Novel-834 shares the hard facts on where CMs stand.

Unfortunately as CMs we’re not supposed to get involved in these kinds of things and kind of just have to let it happen. It’s scary how the stress of vacations bring out the horrific nature of parents… I’ve seen a few kids get smacked in my store. I also had a family come in because the very young daughter stole a pin and was being forced to come back and apologize to us while she was in tears. The parents insist that we do something about it and basically wanted us to [yell] at their child ourselves… Very sad and awkward.

Disney might only be able to do so much on the legal front, but many contributors on the thread are encouraging any future witnesses to report potential abuse. It’s been said that the only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing, and that’s definitely something both Disney Park Guests can fix.

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While many Guests choose to ignore these incidents, like those who write on social media, “Mind your business. Kids throw tantrums in the Parks all the time.” There is still something they can do to help. Child Wellfare Agencies exist for a reason, and they are designed to aid in stopping abuse in or out of the Disney Parks.

How do you think Disney can crack down harder on this epidemic of abuse? Tell us at Inside the Magic in the comments below!

 

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