Marvel Studios has taken to Twitter Tuesday to denounce anti-LGBTQ legislation after their parent company, Disney, received backlash from their own employees — including the threat of walkouts — for not outright condemning Florida’s “Don’t Say Gay” bill.
The bill, which severely limits discussions on sexual orientation and gender identity in Florida’s public schools, was sponsored by politicians who received donations from the House of Mouse.
“We strongly denounce any and ALL legislation that infringes on the basic human rights of the LGBTQIA+ community,” the Marvel Studios Twitter account said in a statement. “Marvel Studios stands for hope, inclusivity and strength; and we proudly stand with the community. Today, we pledge to continue our strong commitment as allies who promote the values of equality, acceptance and respect.”
Disney CEO Bob Chapek made an initial statement on March 7, claiming to pledge “unwavering committment to the LGBTQ+ community” and to create “a more inclusive company — and world,” however the statement stopped short of condemning the discriminatory legislation, despite acknowledging it as “controversial.”
Just days after that initial statement, Chapek made a revised letter to staff, this time including a full-blown apology, Deadline reports.
“You needed me to be a stronger ally in the fight for equal rights and I let you down…I am sorry,” the letter from March 11 said. He later promised to increase the company’s support “for advocacy groups to combat similar legislation in other states.”
Despite this apology, dissent among Disney employees continues to grow, to the point that they are now threatening to do a walkout if stronger measures are not undertaken. This includes permanently severing ties, via donations, to the politicians who had a hand at creating or sponsoring the “Don’t Say Gay” bill.
The letter from Disney employees stated that although they appreciated Chapek’s apology note, “there is still more work to be done.” (via Deadline).
“Due to the lack of compassion and advocacy, TWDC’s LGBTQIA+ community and their allies are determined to take a stand via multiple direct actions, including both virtual and in-person protests – the first of which will take place on Tuesday, March 15th,” the letter said.
We will be sure to keep you up to date on all the latest developments with Disney, and the subsequent fallout from the anti-LGBTQ legislation.