Since the phased reopening of Walt Disney World Resort, there have been some entertainers that have been performing at the parks. However, any of the actors from the Actors’ Equity Association were not among them. The Actors’ Equity Association represents actors that perform in many of the stage shows or speaking/singing roles in streetmosphere shows throughout the four parks.
With the reopening of the parks, a big sticking point between Disney and the Actors’ Equity Association was the testing of performers for COVID-19. Today, Walt Disney World Resort announced that it would be providing testing for cast members at the Walt Disney World Resort.
Disney released a statement saying, “We have offered the location to help with community testing and any suggestion that this has been done as a result of any one union is unfounded. The Florida Division of Emergency Management will operate the location which is available to Cast Members and their immediate families as well as Florida residents. Our actions support all cast and our community at large.”
“We have been consistent that testing is an important part of ensuring a safe workplace for Equity performers, and today, I’m pleased to see that Disney World has agreed,” said Kate Shindle, President of Actors’ Equity Association. “With the news that Disney will make testing available for Equity performers and others in the park, I’m happy to announce that Equity’s executive committee has signed a memorandum of understanding with Disney for Equity performers to return.”
With this agreement signed, Equity performers could begin the process of returning to the parks at Walt Disney World Resort. At this time, there is no known date for the approximately 750 performers to return.
Cast Members and their families will be able to get tested for free starting on August 14 from 7:00 AM to 4:00 PM. Cast Members can register for testing at disneycovid19test.com. The public can also register at doineedacovid19test.com. Testing will be available for those with or without symptoms and also be self-administered. The test will be with a nasal swab inside of an individual’s cars. The results will be delivered in 3-5 days.