On March 1st, a four-day in-person work week will go into effect for Disney, prompting over 2,300 corporate employees to sign a petition in protest of the return-to-work rule which ends the work-from-home practice which began during Covid.
According to the New York Post, the petition from Disney employees said the mandate from CEO Bob Iger is "likely to have unintended consequences that cause long-term harm to the company."
The petition added, "This policy will slow, or even reverse, our post-COVID recovery and growth by creating critical resource shortages and causing irreplaceable institutional knowledge loss."
On February 8, Iger announced that Disney was laying off 7,000 of its employees and was going to restructure after a disappointing last quarter of Fiscal Year 2022. Disney employees across all of their brands, including Pixar, Marvel, and ABC, had been allowed to work in the office only two to three days a week. Iger announced the change in January and some employees threatened to quit once the change took effect.
According to the Washington Post, many of the employees are citing that they are parents or are neurodivergent and that working from home is more conducive to their productivity.
"Flexibility at Disney really felt like a fresh start," the petition said. "Now it feels like we're moving backwards."
Hundreds of testimonials were passed on to upper management with the petition.
"The workers want Iger to invest in remote work support for Disney's workforce while simultaneously fostering a work culture through in-person events and networking opportunities," reports the New York Post.
Iger said, "As you've heard me say many times, creativity is the heart and soul of who we are and what we do at Disney. And in a creative business like ours, nothing can replace the ability to connect, observe, and create with peers that comes from being physically together, nor the opportunity to grow professionally by learning from leaders and mentors."
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