Nationwide #DisneyLetHimGo Protests Call on Disney CEO to Leave Trump Council
Disney targeted for role on Trump advisory council; 390,000 sign petitions demanding Iger step down
NATIONWIDE - Today the Center for Popular Democracy and its affiliates including Organize Florida and ACCE, together with national allies Color of Change, CREDO, Free Press, MoveOn.org, People’s Action, SumOfUs.org and Working Families Party protested Disney locations around the country. Following the lead of Orlando Disney workers and Orlando community groups, the social justice groups called on Walt Disney Company CEO Bob Iger to step down from his role as a member of Trump’s Business Advisory Council. The coalition collected over 390,000 petitions to Disney on behalf of people from across the country who demand Iger leave the council.
“Disney has the power to take a stand against Trump and support a happy ending for all families. They must follow in Uber’s footsteps and quit the economic advisory council instead of collaborating with Trump and his authoritarian, hateful, anti-immigrant regime,” said Jennifer Epps-Addison, Network President and Co-Executive Director for the Center for Popular Democracy.
Racial and social justice activists say this is only the first step in what will be a continuous fight to protect the health and well-being of all people — including immigrants, people of color, minimum wage workers, and the LGBT community during the Trump administration. Disney is one of more than a dozen other corporations still on Trump’s economic advisory council. CPD aims to hold each and every one of them accountable.
“Donald Trump has built his brand and presidency by disparaging Latino, Muslim, and Black communities as well as women and people with disabilities. As a corporation that has touted itself as valuing diversity, inclusion and family I would think that CEO Bob Iger would seek to distance himself, not embrace or enable Trump and Steve Bannon’s bigoted agenda. But instead, Iger and other CEOs continue to place access to power over people’s lives under the false pretense of influencing positive change. To be clear- any CEO who thinks they can disrupt Trump and Bannon’s agenda is either disingenuous or fooling themselves” said Rashad Robinson, Executive Director of Color Of Change.
"By standing with Trump, Iger has mistaken his role as the CEO of the Walt Disney Company. He cannot just represent the business concerns of the company for trade and tax regulations, but must also represent the ethics and values that the Disney brand sells to families around the world. It’s time that our corporations put immigrants, workers and refugees first" said Yulissa Arce, Central Florida Director, Organize Florida.
"It is appalling that any leader would be willing to advance company interests on the backs of the people most threatened by Trump’s hate,” said Heidi Hess, Senior Campaign Manager at CREDO. "CEOs like Disney’s Bob Iger who serve on Trump’s advisory councils have to make a choice: Stand up for morality and human dignity or side with Trump’s racist, misogynistic and xenophobic hate."
The announcement comes after successful protests around the country led to the resignation of Uber CEO Travis Kalanick from the Trump business council. Last week, drivers and other community organizations organized #UberRidesWithHate protests at Uber offices in New York City, San Francisco, and New Orleans, among other nationwide locations, demanding that the ride-sharing company stop collaborating with the Trump administration.
"Disney is known for it's fun-loving family movies. But there's nothing fun about what the Trump Administration is doing to immigrant families. Disney can sing 'It's a Small World' all they want, but until Bob Iger steps down from Trump's economic advisory council, they'll be singing out of tune, “ said Liz Ryan Murray, Policy Director at People's Action.
"Disney CEO Bob Iger is validating Trump’s violent agenda by serving on his advisory council.” explained Nicole Carty, Campaign Manager for SumOfUs.org. “We know Iger supports immigration, and has employees that will be impacted by the ban. By remaining on Trump’s advisory board Iger is signaling his own interests and profits are more important than the basic human rights of his employees, customers and vulnerable refugees. There is no neutral,” added Carty. “Either Iger steps off the advisory committee, or he is complicit in the violence and chaos that Trump’s administration is creating.”
Center for Popular Democracy promotes equity, opportunity, and a dynamic democracy in partnership with innovative base-building organizations, organizing networks and alliances, and progressive unions across the country. CPD builds the strength and capacity of democratic organizations to envision and advance a pro-worker, pro-immigrant, racial justice agenda