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Opinion

Readers React: Disneyland continues to be the ‘Tragic Kingdom’ as long as it fails to pay workers a living wage

Disneyland
Visitors walk toward Sleeping Beauty’s Castle at Disneyland in 2015.
(Jae C. Hong / Associated Press)

To the editor: My very first day on the job at Disneyland, 18 years old and proudly wearing my costume (I was a Wild West saloon girl), I learned that my fellow “cast members” called it the “Tragic Kingdom.” Why, I asked. You’ll find out, they said.

Later, I auditioned for the “Kids of the Kingdom” show and was excited to be chosen, but then I discovered that the four-week rehearsal period was called a “workshop.” Translation: There was no pay. I declined.

For Disneyland spokeswoman Suzi Brown to say that Sen. Bernie Sanders is speaking in favor of workers seeking a living wage in order to “keep himself in the headlines” not only shows her ignorance of the man, but it is also a lame defense of the corporation’s focus on the bottom line to the detriment of the people who make Disney what it is.

Eileen Flaxman, Claremont

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To the editor: I am not the biggest Sanders supporter, but I understood his point last Friday after being gifted two tickets to Disneyland from a supervisor who couldn’t attend on that particular day.

I was astonished to see that the parking fee was $20. I casually asked the parking attendant if she earned $20 an hour since there were at least 100 cars behind us; she laughed and said, “No, ma’am.”

I find it terrible that a corporation as large as Disney does not pay its employees the amount it charges the public to self-park. Shame on Disney for not paying its workers their fair share of the millions it profits every day it is in business.

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Elisa Perez, West Covina

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