ORLANDO, Fla. — Disney union employees are protesting Thursday about bonuses they said they aren't getting.
The union, Unite Here Local 362, said 80,000 Disney cast members will get the first $250 of their $1,000 tax-cut bonus.
"We want the $1,000 tax bonus, and we want a good raise. The two are separate," cast member Jeremy Haicken said. "We don't want the $1,000 held over our head to make us accept a 50-cent raise."
But employees in the union said Disney isn't giving them a bonus until they reach a contract agreement.
"We are not earning the money that we need in order to pay our bills, in order to survive," said cast member Norma Jean Rose, who's been with the company for more than 10 years.
Unions representing about 37,000 Disney workers have been fighting since last year for a pay increase.
"I cannot afford to pay my rent," Rose said. "I'm supposed to pay my rent. I have an eviction notice every month."
Rose said she would like to earn enough to pay her bills.
"People say if you don't like it, then quit. Get another job. But I love my job. I love what i do. That's why I stay," she said. "I left my home and my family to work here. I love this company. But I don't love the way I'm being treated right now."
Disney said any compensation deal, by law, must be negotiated, including bonuses.
The company released the following statement:
"Our offer to increase pay by 6 to 10 percent over the next two years reflects our ongoing commitment to our cast members. Wages and bonuses are part of our negotiation process."
Cox Media Group