Governor Ron DeSantis has been on a roll lately with enacting laws against members of the LGBTQ+ community while simultaneously targeting Walt Disney World’s business practices. It’s to a point where several organizations, including the NAACP, have issued travel warnings for those planning to visit the state of Florida.
Florida’s biggest industry is tourism and hospitality, and one of its biggest employers and taxpayers is Walt Disney World. Unfortunately, the laws DeSantis has been drafting and signing into law affect theme park employees as much as they do tourists, and now potential Guests are wondering what to do about their Disney vacations.
In a recent Reddit post, u/Paulruswasdead states that they have “a lot of mixed emotions about going back to Disney world with the state Florida is in right now,” further explaining that they’d like to support Disney but don’t know how without supporting Florida. Several comments expressed similar opinions, stating that either Disney World was their happy place or that they honestly enjoyed visiting the state’s other offerings, but they aren’t sure what the best option is.
Many suggested just staying within the Disney bubble to not only stay in a safer area but also to support Disney World as much as possible, while others mentioned visiting Disneyland or even one of the international Disney Parks. One comment from u/Purple_Quail_4193 stateed that they go to “support the cast members with my smile who are suffering because of the situation…even at Universal since they’re in the same circle.”
One comment came from u/kelseyandthemouse, an actual current Cast Member, who explained that it’s a terrifying time to be living in Florida, especially as a member of the LGBTQ+ community, but that if the tourism industry takes a hit, frontline Cast Members and employees will likely be the first to be affected by layoffs or other adjustment measures.
While many visitors are torn about wanting to visit or support Disney World without supporting DeSantis, there are plenty of local businesses in Central Florida that rely on the tourism industry to survive, many who don’t agree with DeSantis’s actions. While Disney is a billion dollar corporation, Guests would still be supporting their Cast Members on a basic level by continuing to visit, show support, and being kind and respectful to those going through a traumatic situation right now. The same goes for Universal and the other Orlando theme parks. Ultimately, the choice is up to you, but now more than ever, frontline theme park workers could use some support.
What do you think about the situation? Share your opinion with Inside the Magic in the comments below.