Although we’ve seen some changes in and around the Disneyland Resort theme parks that show Disney is getting ready for when Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure can reopen to the public, no official reopening date has been set yet.
A trade association representing Disneyland and others and a new commercial created by a separate group have called on Governor Newsom to open up the theme parks. Now, some of California’s state legislators are joining in too.
According to Deadline, a large group composed of California state senators and assemblymembers sent a letter to Governor Newsom earlier today requesting that Newsom issue reopening guidelines for theme parks, like Disneyland. You can read the whole letter on Deadline.
Specifically, the letter notes that “Many indoor facilities are already operating safely at reduced capacities, with face covering and physical distancing requirements, and with heightened hygiene practices. Logic would suggest that since theme parks are controlled venues operating predominantly outdoors, that they too could reopen with similar health and safety protocols.”
The letter also points out that “theme parks throughout the country and internationally have successfully reopened and one glance at the news make its obvious that outbreaks simply aren’t being traced back to these theme parks.” In fact, health officials have noted that no COVID-19 cases have been definitively traced back to Orlando theme parks.
The letter goes on to say that theme parks have not been addressed by the Governor’s “Blueprint for a Safer Economy” and thus “have no path forward, no guidance documents for the state’s expectations related to reopening, and no sense of timing to share with their anxious employees and guests.” Disney officials have made a similar statement, noting that without guidance from the state, they are left in a state of limbo.
The California state senators and assemblymembers behind the letter called on Governor Newsom to reopen the theme parks and provide them with the guidance documents they need promptly, insisting that “the time is now to move forward with theme park reopenings.” The legislators insist that “Theme parks have spent the past six months preparing to reopen in a responsible manner [and have] comprehensive plans that include capacity reductions, thorough health and safety protocols, and park-wide modifications to support these efforts.”
Deadline notes that last week Josh D’Amaro, chairman of Disney Parks, Experiences, and Products asked California officials to “treat theme parks like you would other sectors and help us reopen.” D’Amaro said that theme parks “need guidelines that are fair and equitable so [they] can better understand [their] future and chart a path toward reopening.”
The California Attractions and Parks Association issued its own comprehensive plan for reopening recently and has noted that “amusement parks have opened in 43 states and, unlike bars and restaurants, the data do not show parks contributing to coronavirus spread.” Anaheim’s mayor has also called on Governor Newsom to reopen theme parks, insisting that he is “confident in their ability to reopen safely and responsibly.”
Over a month ago, Governor Newsom noted that guidance regarding theme park reopening procedures would be “forthcoming,” but no guidelines have been released to date. We’re keeping our eyes open for any response from Governor Newsom regarding all of these recent statements, letters, and commercials, so be sure to come back for more updates.
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