ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – As Disney World prepares to reopen its parks to the public next month, it will begin to call back thousands of furloughed workers in the next few weeks, according to a union leader.

What You Need To Know

​​In a call with union members this week, Unite Here! Local 362 leader Eric Clinton shared updates about how Disney plans to staff the parks and what changes employees can expect. Local 362 represents auto plaza, attractions, custodial and other employees at Disney World.

Clinton said Disney will bring back potentially 8,000 workers, including all full-time attractions and custodial workers. Many part-time workers will also be called back.

Disney will begin recalling most attractions employees on June 21, Clinton said.

Employees who work at areas that aren’t set to reopen yet, such as the water parks and select attractions, will be able to temporarily transfer to other areas as needed, Clinton said. Disney will need workers for a new position that will include monitoring the queue at the main entrances at the parks. These workers will make sure visitors are social distancing while they wait to have their temperatures checked, Clinton said.  

With international workers unable to return, for the time being, Disney will staff the country pavilions in Epcot’s World Showcase with U.S. workers.

Last month, Disney World revealed its reopening plans which include a number of safety new measures for employees and visitors. All employees will be required to wear masks and have their temperatures checked. The same will be required for visitors. Disney will provide masks for employees, Clinton said.

Employees will no longer be able to take a visitor’s phone and help them take a picture, according to Clinton. That’s a change from a pre-COVID Disney World.

Disney World’s theme parks closed in mid-March in response to the coronavirus pandemic, leading to thousands of workers being furloughed. For the reopening, Disney will take a phased approached. Magic Kingdom and Disney’s Animal Kingdom will reopen on July 11 followed by Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios on July 15.

Disney Vacation Club resorts along with Fort Wilderness Resort and Campground will reopen on June 22. Disney has not yet announced reopening dates for its other resort hotels or its water parks.

The reopening first began with Disney Springs, which welcomed back visitors last month.