COVID-19

Disney reopenings in doubt after COVID-19 cases spike

Nova Safo Jun 25, 2020
Heard on: Marketplace Morning Report
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The Disneyland reopening in California, planned for mid-July, has been delayed for now. David McNew/Getty Images
COVID-19

Disney reopenings in doubt after COVID-19 cases spike

Nova Safo Jun 25, 2020
The Disneyland reopening in California, planned for mid-July, has been delayed for now. David McNew/Getty Images
HTML EMBED:
COPY

With new COVID-19 cases spiking, especially in Southern and Western states, what to do about reopenings?

California in the West and Florida in the South are hot spots — right where Disney has its theme parks and was planning a midsummer restart. Now, that’s in question.

Disney has already reopened some theme parks in Asia, but the U.S. is proving to be more tricky amid a resurgence of coronavirus cases likely tracing back to Memorial Day when many states began loosening restrictions.

In Florida, where more than 109,000 cases have been reported, capacity is already thinning for hospital intensive care units, even as Disney goes forward with plans to reopen its massive theme park there next month.

A workers’ petition online is calling for the company to reconsider.

In California, unions representing Disneyland employees — some 17,000 of them — are also balking at reopening plans.

There, Disney has announced it will postpone a planned mid-July reopening, citing delays in getting guidelines from state officials.

California is in the midst of an alarming rise in cases — a record spike came Tuesday, bringing the state total to more than 190,000.

Shuttered theme parks have already cost disney more than a billion dollars in profits.

COVID-19 Economy FAQs

Are states ready to roll out COVID-19 vaccines?

Claire Hannan, executive director of the nonprofit Association of Immunization Managers, which represents state health officials, said states have been making good progress in their preparations. And we could have several vaccines pretty soon. But states still need more funding, she said. Hannan doesn’t think a lack of additional funding would hold up distribution initially, but it could cause problems down the road. “It’s really worrisome that Congress may not pass funding or that there’s information circulating saying that states don’t need additional funding,” she said.

How is the service industry dealing with the return of coronavirus restrictions?

Without another round of something like the Paycheck Protection Program, which kept a lot of businesses afloat during the pandemic’s early stages, the outlook is bleak for places like restaurants. Some in the San Francisco Bay Area, for example, only got one week of indoor dining back before cases rose and restrictions went back into effect. Restaurant owners are revamping their business models in an effort to survive while waiting to see if they’ll be able to get more aid.

How are hospitals handling the nationwide surge in COVID-19 cases?

As the pandemic surges and more medical professionals themselves are coming down with COVID, nearly 1 in 5 hospitals in the country report having a critical shortage of staff, according to data from the Department of Health and Human Services. One of the knock-on effects of staff shortages is that people who have other medical needs are being asked to wait.

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