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Disney Faces Backlash Again After Donating $100K To Homeless Floridians — But Not To Homeless Cast Members

The Walt Disney Company has been under fire lately due to unpleasant wage negotiations¬†and Cast Members’ well-publicized poverty-related struggles — but Disney has just donated thousands of dollars to a Central Florida charity that focuses on homelessness, despite the controversy.

The happy news about Disney’s $100,000 donation to the Youth Center Transformation at the Coalition for the Homeless of Central Florida was shared on the Disney Parks Blog. The donation from Disney led to a new youth center with significant improvements.

Disney’s positive impact on the Coalition for the Homeless of Central Florida was obvious from the blog post, where the coalition’s President and CEO said that Walt Disney Company support has allowed the coalition “to broaden resident programs, offer opportunities for families to create new happy memories, and now, provide a special place for [their] students to decompress.”

kids enter the new youth center of the Coalition for the Homeless of Central Florida

Children are welcomed into the new youth center of the Coalition for the Homeless of Central Florida, which was renovated in part due to a large donation from Disney. Credit: Disney Parks Blog

Disney’s donation was undoubtedly impactful, as evidenced by the big smiles on children’s faces in the image shown above from the blog post — but unfortunately, Disney enthusiasts who have been keeping an eye on the wage negotiations (or hearing Cast Member testimonials on social media, where Cast Members have been revealing their struggles with poverty or homelessness) are not letting Disney’s generous donation pass without comment.

“Please pay your cast members a living wage,” one Disney fan wrote on Twitter. “I wonder how many employee children will be needing this soon?”

“Pay your cast a living wage if you wanna actually help,” another person wrote.

Cast Member Strike

A unionized Cast Member with a sign protesting Disney’s low wages. Cast Members are a crucial part of Disney vacations for many Walt Disney World Resort or Disneyland Resort Guests who visit Disney Parks like the Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom, Hollywood Studios, and EPCOT.

“At least 1 out of every 10 cast members have experienced homelessness while working for your company,” another person wrote on Twitter, “but ok”.

“So you push people down to help them up? Do you throw rocks at baby birds just to put them back in the nest, too?” another person asked. Evidently, Disney has just donated thousands to this cause — but the company has also opened itself up to even harsher criticism in the process!

Did you know about Cast Members’ struggles, or about Disney’s charitable efforts in Central Florida? Do you often visit Disney Parks like the Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom, Hollywood Studios, and EPCOT — and have you found that Cast Members are a crucial part of your Disney vacations at Walt Disney World Resort?

About Sharon

Sharon is a writer and animal lover from New England. Sharon's two main focuses in her work are Disney's correlations with pop culture and the significance of Disney princesses (which was the basis for her college thesis). When she's not writing about Disney, Sharon spends her time singing, dancing, and cavorting with woodland creatures!