Walt Disney World is supposed to be the most magical place on earth, and that’s supposed to go for the people that work there as well as the guests. For many working at Disney World is a dream come true, but one former Cast Member who lived that dream is now suing the organization for failing to accommodate her disabilities and for retaliation after she complained.
Florida Politics reports that Morgan Schopfer worked at the World of Disney retail store at Disney Springs until November of last year. The woman suffered from numerous health issues, including cerebral palsy and Crohn’s disease. She made accommodation requests to her employer, including the ability to sit down every 30 minutes and not have to lift anything over 10 pounds. She also required frequent trips to the bathroom.
According to the report, Disney did not meet Schopfer’s needs and did not respond adequately to her complaints. Her lawsuit goes on to say that Disney then pressured her to quit, and eventually reduced her hours before firing her at the end of November 2022. The lawsuit calls her experience a “hostile work environment” due to the ways she claims managers responded to her requests for accommodation. In September the woman states she got dizzy from standing too long, leading to collapse and a seizure. She ended up in the hospital.
In September, Shopfer made a claim of discrimination to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and the Florida Commission on Human Relations. She received a right-to-sue letter in December, which has brought us to this point.
In 2020 Disney added Inclusiveness as its “5th Key” to success, the five important points that Disney Cast Members across the company are supposed to strive toward when interacting both with each other as well as guests. Florida Politics reports that the lawsuit, claims a guest experience manager told the woman that inclusiveness was a “public relations thing.”
The accusations of the lawsuit are certainly significant, but Walt Disney World has yet to comment publicly. The resort will almost certainly have its own side of the story. The Walt Disney Company frequently states that its Cast Members are a big part of the company’s overall success, but this is one Cast Member that clearly doesn’t feel that level of appreciation.
This is just one of the public lawsuits that Walt Disney World is currently dealing with. The resort has also been sued by Annual Passholders who are taking issues with the park’s reservation system. A similar lawsuit has also been filed against Disneyland Resort in California.
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CinemaBlend’s resident theme park junkie and amateur Disney historian, Dirk began writing for CinemaBlend as a freelancer in 2015 before joining the site full-time in 2018. He has previously held positions as a Staff Writer and Games Editor, but has more recently transformed his true passion into his job as the head of the site's Theme Park section. He has previously done freelance work for various gaming and technology sites. Prior to starting his second career as a writer he worked for 12 years in sales for various companies within the consumer electronics industry. He has a degree in political science from the University of California, Davis. Is an armchair Imagineer, Epcot Stan, Future Club 33 Member.