Following pressure from unions and Sen. Bernie Sanders
, Disneyland has agreed to a three-year contract to pay their employees a $15 per hour living wage.
Effective immediately, union employees at the Anaheim resort who were making the minimum $11 an hour wage will be bumped by 20 percent to $13.25 an hour, and then increased to $15 on Jan. 1, 2019. The wage eventually will cap at $15.45 in June of 2020.
This will raise Disneyland's wages to $15 an hour three years before the state of California's mandatory wage increase.
The Walt Disney Co. says the recent wage increase will affect more than 9,700 employees, boosting their annual salaries by $8,000 a year. The new contract only applies to union workers, though the company says they will negotiate the other employees' salaries separately.
"Our cast members are at the heart of making our guests' dreams come true and this meaningful pay increase reflects the valuable roles they play at the resort," said Josh D'Amaro, president of Disneyland Resort, in a press release.
Employees at Walt Disney World in Orlando are also in a similar wage dispute, with local unions fighting to lift their minimum wage
from $10 per hour to $15 per hour by 2021. Union workers here in Orlando have referred to their pay as "poverty wages."
As of now, no pay increase has been finalized in Orlando.