Mickey Mouse arrested at Disneyland

32 unionized Disneyland workers, some dressed as characters, have been arrested at the Disneyland Hotel, where they are striking for better wages and benefits.

More than 600 protesters marched from a Disney-owned hotel to try and block the entrance to the park.

The employees were waving placards and chanting slogans, calling on Disneyland to provide better wages and benefits. Some of the protestors dressed as Disney characters like Tinkerbell, Aladdin and Mickey Mouse.

Disney labor protest ends in 32 arrests


  1. Attempts to seize Tinkerbell were repeatedly thwarted by the timely applications of fairy dust, leaving officers struggling helplessly midair.
    Two officers were wounded when, distracted by the friendly, modern Mickey they were booted painfully in the rear by the original, prankster Mickey.
    Pinocchio vaulted out of reach on his nose, repeating “I love my job, I love my job, I love my job…”

  2. See, nobody NEEDS to work for Disney. Everyone I know who used to work there left as soon as they could because it’s such a mess. I wouldn’t strike, I’d just quit.

    Mind you how they’ve never been sued for ehight discrimination is beyond me (characters are paid according to how tall their character is- and hired according to that same height)

  3. Yeah…striking never really causes proper reform, it just encourages the companies to do the minimum to get by to stop an angry mob…

    If you’re unhappy, go get a new job…you knew the pay and benefits when you signed up. To me, you’re not entitled to anything other than that unless circumstances change majorly.

    Yeah, I could pick up trash off the pavement and scoop up after horses day after day…does that really merit increased benefits from last year? And then once the company is strong-armed into paying up…they’ll end up having to do cut backs and then people are left without benefits as they visit unemployment offices. And then they’ll get picked up by another union…rinse and repeat process.

  4. Would the act of wearing their costumes while protesting get them fired anyway? I’ve read repeatedly (here) that non-Disney use of costumes is verboten.

  5. My old man was a management consultant. He had a sign above his desk:

    Management gets the union they deserve.

  6. Speaking as a former Disney character, I can say with authority that characters are NOT paid according to their height range. I have no idea where you got that impression, baldhead, but it’s wrong. The only thing your height determines is which characters you can play – it certainly doesn’t set your wage.

    Dead Robot, the costumes the protestors were wearing weren’t Disney costumes; they were Halloween costumes that anybody can buy. The protestors were all hotel workers in any case, not character performers.

    I support the actions of the workers. Disney’s wages have always been criminally low, especially for the level of work they demand.

  7. Mind you how they’ve never been sued for ehight discrimination is beyond me (characters are paid according to how tall their character is- and hired according to that same height)

    Is it taller characters that get paid more or is it characters that are farther away from the normal distribution of heights? So the very short and the very tall would both get paid more because there are not as many potential people who can play those roles?

  8. I think what is really needed here is an ad-hoc society of people who just love DisneyLand so much that they work for the sheer joy of it ;-)

  9. Years ago I worked at hotels in San Fran in various capacities. (I was non-union. wasn’t planning to stay).

    The chefs and cooks in the hotel’s higher-end restaurants were mostly unionized. They all seemed to like their jobs and took pride in their work. It made the restaurant run more smoothly. They absolutely would not take any abuse from anybody about anything. e.g. A snippy hotel manager on an important lunch meeting threatening to fire somebody over a soggy salad.

    When I worked in hotel’s without unionized restaurant staff it was chaos. People quit regularly because of abuse, not getting promoted because the chef liked another girl’s tits and promoted her, busboys and dishwashers regularly yelled at made to work extra shifts or get fired, etc… And, on top of that, those restaurants had totally uneven food and service. Bad reviews.

    It seemed to me, in the restaurant/hotel industry, unions worked.

  10. RaptorOne, I feel you are 180 degrees from correct with this statement of yours.

    If you’re unhappy, go get a new job…you knew the pay and benefits when you signed up. To me, you’re not entitled to anything other than that unless circumstances change majorly.

    Tell me, how do you manage to keep the health insurance current for your family when there is a 6 month to one year delay between the start of your new job and the start of your benefits? How do you manage to get your old boss to give you a good recommendation when you’re leaving because you’re underpaid (and that upsets your boss).

    Capital and Labor cannot and will not see eye to eye so long as one holds a carrot out for the other to beg for.

  11. Also to RaptorOne –

    If the owners get a disembodied ‘corporate’ being to hide behind, why not let the workers have one too?

  12. Another reason these folks may not be so willing to get new jobs – the perks you get by working for the Mouse. The only reason I’ve kept my seasonal job at WDW is so I can keep getting into the parks for free. Some of Disney’s employees are its biggest fans – even when they feel they’re getting screwed over.

  13. Brilliant move on the part of the organizers, having everyone wear Disney costumes. Otherwise, any mention of this protest would have been relegated to the back page of the Orange County Register. Instead, it’s making the rounds of the blogosphere – no one can resist clicking on a headline that reads “Tinkerbell Tossed in the Slammer” …

  14. @#22 bshaurette,

    ”Brilliant move on the part of the organizers, having everyone wear Disney costumes.”

    Absolutely! Those strike captains know the game. The first question for an action is, How do we get the press, the cameras? Those kids have a future in the upcoming labor struggles.

  15. Will they put Mickey on house arrest…oops I mean Disney arrest as long as he keeps his ankle monitor on. Wouldn’t want the children to be traumatized due to Mickey’s incarceration!

  16. I’m told Mickey’s tail was between his legs once in custody. Cinderella broke her glass slippers. The handsome prince is contemplating filing a civil suit.

    No word yet on Snow White. The 7 dwarfs are keeping tight lipped about the situation and have instructed her to do the same.

    Tinkerbell was finally apprehended and taken to the juvenile detention center as opposed to jail. At press time Peter pan was still trying to reach Tink’s parents!

  17. As a former Disneyland employee, I can say that we never had a choice as to whether we wanted to be part of the union or not. It was a requirement of employment to join the unions around Disney, and an equal requirement not to allow the public knowledge that Disney employees are unionized.

    I hated working for the mouse, and applaud the efforts of those working their now to get better wages. Sure, we were earning more than minimum wage, but Disney has a knack for cutting your hours and giving the new hires more hours because they cost less per hour. Happened to me many times, so much that I lost my health benefits because I, with a three-year seniority, was unable to get shifts because the new hires were taking my spots.

  18. #2: I have trouble believing that any of the arresting officers were able to muster a happy thought.

  19. #29 – they were thinking “Great! A collar! And a cute, female one!” And that’s when Tink hit ’em.
    But as Roschelle pointed out in #27, it only worked for so long.

  20. Well, I was actually in that situation once without health care…and I did the most amazing thing…I paid for it myself!!! It was amazing!!! I was able to buy health insurance for my OWN family…who knew an individual could take care of themselves. :) Oddly enough I declined the company insurance because mine was cheaper and covered more since I didn’t have to help pay for the rest of the company of smokers and other unhealthy folk too.

    I don’t think healthcare is a “right” and especially not from an employer. If they give it to you, that’s great, if not, it’s not the end of the world…

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