Universal Orlando Resort has laid off several of its Team Members. This just mere weeks after reopening its Florida theme parks on June 5.
The first to break the news appeared to be Ashley Carter from Spectrum News on Twitter.
JUST IN: Universal Orlando has laid off an undisclosed number of employees. A Universal spokesperson confirmed the layoffs in a statement to Spectrum News: pic.twitter.com/AYihWStfdd
— Ashley Carter (@AshleyLCarter1) June 24, 2020
From Spectrum News 13…
The layoffs affects positions across multiple departments. Universal would not say how many employees were let go or which departments were impacted.
“We have made the difficult decision to reduce our Parks & Resorts workforce across multiple locations and business units,” Universal Orlando spokesman Tom Schroder said in a statement to Spectrum News. “This decision was not made lightly, but was necessary to prepare us for the future.”
Universal said it will be supporting the laid-off employees through severance pay, subsidized health benefits, and professional reemployment assistance.
“We are working to structure and strengthen our business for the future in anticipation of the tourism industry taking time to fully recover,” Schroder said.
While it’s not clear exactly why the employees were laid off, Schroder’s comments seem to indicate that economics are certainly a factor.
With Florida theme parks limiting their capacity due to social distancing guideline — and many visitors likely staying away for now — it’s possible the finances simply aren’t there to keep everyone on staff.
Universal has taken a 32% hit to its theme park business since closing in March, and the much anticipated Epic Universe theme park has been postponed for now.
Could Universal and Walt Disney World close again before the end of the year?
Of course another possibility is that Universal Orlando and Walt Disney World could be bracing for another potential shutdown, as coronavirus cases in Florida are skyrocketing once again and some employees are calling for Disney to delay its planned July 11 reopening.
There’s been no formal indication that this is what is going aside from rumors on theme park message boards, but if cases continue to increase it’s possible that Florida could roll back its reopening plans for now.
We’ll keep you posted as this story develops.
[Source: Spectrum News 13]