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(Credit: Disney)

Film

Disney issues an apology for silence on ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill

There has been a lot of public backlash after the Parental Rights in Education bill (known as the ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill by most people) was passed in Florida with the full support of the Republican Party. Many companies have already spoken about it but the glaring silence of Disney garnered criticism from employees as well as fans.

The aforementioned bill states that schools do not have the right to educate children under the age of nine about gender identities or sexual orientation. According to the bill, only parents can educate children about those subjects and institutions like schools should not contribute to the highly politicised discourse surrounding gender.

The White House has already spoken out against the bill, claiming that it targets “vulnerable” children. Since Disney is one of the largest companies in Florida, their silence on the issue has been a significant one. LGBTQ+ employees of Pixar penned an open letter to Disney, criticising their neutral stance as well as their censorship of LGBTQ+ sentiments from their content.

“Thank you to all who have reached out to me sharing your pain, frustration and sadness over the company’s response to the Florida ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill,” Disney CEO Bob Chapek wrote in a new letter that was posted to Twitter, apologising for the company’s silence about the bill and promising to take meaningful steps against the bill.

Adding, “Speaking to you, reading your messages, and meeting with you have helped me better understand how painful our silence was. It is clear that this is not just an issue about a bill in Florida, but instead yet another challenge to basic human rights. You needed me to be a stronger ally in the fight for equal rights and I let you down. I am sorry.”

Read the full letter below.