Unions that represent 45,000 workers at Walt Disney World have reached a deal that would boost the resort’s minimum wage to $18 per hour by the end of 2023. 

Disney and the Service Trades Council Union coalition have been negotiating on a new contract since August 2022. STCU members voted in February to reject a previous Disney offer that would have only raised wages by $1 for most workers. The tentative agreement, announced Thursday, will raise the resort’s minimum wage to:

  • $16 per hour, retroactive to October 2022
  • $17 per hour, when the contract is ratified
  • $18 per hour starting Dec. 3, 2023

Beyond this year, workers will receive a total of $5.50 and $8.60 in increased hourly pay over the life of the contract, which would expire in 2026. STCU president Matt Hollis said Thursday, “For cast members that are making the minimum currently, this contract provides over 36% general wage increases over the life of the agreement.” 

On Disney’s side, Disney World president Jeff Vahle said in a statement, “Our cast members are central to Walt Disney World’s enduring magic, which is why we are pleased to have reached this tentative agreement.” 

Union members will vote on the proposal on March 29.

Permits hint at SeaWorld Orlando’s 2024 roller coaster 

Yet another new roller coaster could be on its way to SeaWorld Orlando in 2024, according to a report from Behind the Thrills

Recent permits for wall modification and fire systems point to the new coaster utilizing the show building of the former Empire of the Penguin trackless dark ride, which never reopened after the COVID-19 pandemic hit in March 2020. The ride station would be indoors, based on the permits, with the ride’s path taking it outdoors near the park’s Sea Lion and Otter Stadium. 

SeaWorld has not officially confirmed any plans related to this 2024 project but it will open another coaster, Pipeline, later this year. 

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