Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Bernie Sanders thinks Disney should use 'Avengers' profits to pay workers better wages

Posted By on Tue, Apr 30, 2019 at 2:23 PM

  • Photo via Phil Roeder/Flickr
U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders is calling on Disney to use its Avengers: Endgame profits to pay its workers better wages.

"What would be truly heroic is if Disney used its profits from Avengers to pay all of its workers a middle class wage, instead of paying its CEO Bob Iger $65.6 million – over 1,400 times as much as the average worker at Disney makes," Sanders wrote on Twitter Monday.

The latest installment of the Marvel Entertainment series – a property underneath the Walt Disney Company umbrella – saw a box office return of $1.2 billion worldwide after its release earlier this month.

Sanders, a leading contender in the 2020 Democratic presidential primary,  isn't alone in his criticism of Disney. Last week, Abigail Disney, the granddaughter of Disney co-founder Roy Disney, shared via social media how she thinks Iger's annual salary is "insane."

"Let me [be] very clear. I like Bob Iger. I do NOT speak for my family but only for myself. Other than owning shares (not that many) I have no more say in what happens there than anyone else. But by any objective measure a pay ratio over a thousand is insane," Disney, a filmmaker and philanthropist, wrote in a series of messages on Twitter.

Disney generated a total revenue of more than $59.4 billion in 2018, up from more than $55.1 billion the previous year. In June, Sanders led a rally in Anaheim, California, where he demanded answers for the company ushering in billions in dollars in profit while "they have workers going hungry."

In September, Disney somewhat relented to the growing calls for workers' rights, as they agreed to give its employees $1,000 bonuses and phase in salary increases that'll result in a $15 hourly minimum wage by late 2021.

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