WASHINGTON/SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – Good news came in a bundle this week for workers furloughed last year from the Walt Disney Co.’s California theme park.
The company said it would bring back a first tranche of 10,000 employees as it readies to reopen Disneyland in late April, and for those who don’t get that first round call or aren’t comfortable returning to work yet because of the pandemic, President Joe Biden’s stimulus bill, signed on Thursday, extends their unemployment benefits through the summer.
It is arguably the first time since the crisis erupted in the United States a year ago that the potential end of the health emergency and the economic response to it have overlapped, and service union official Stephen Boardman says his members are ready for the pandemic epoch to end.
“Many, many will go back,” when called to their former jobs as janitors, food servers, ticket takers, and security guards, said Boardman, a spokesman for the SEIU-USWW union, one of about a dozen unions that represent employees at Disneyland, which has hosted a mass vaccination site in a parking lot at the Anaheim, California amusement park since January.
The rest now have support coming from one-time government payments of…