Go Woke, Go Broke: Disney to Axe 7,000 Jobs as Company Faces Backlash Over Left-Wing Agenda

Disney employee protests the Parental Rights in Education law / Getty Images
February 9, 2023

Disney on Wednesday announced it is cutting 7,000 jobs as the corporate giant weathers declining revenue amid backlash to its woke agenda.

The layoffs will allow Disney to cut a total of $5.5 billion in costs, with $3 billion coming out of content, CNBC reported. CEO Robert Iger said Disney will also reorganize into three divisions: entertainment, ESPN, and parks and experiences.

The overhaul follows recent setbacks for Disney last year under former CEO Bob Chapek. The Florida government has attempted to crack down on the family entertainment company's left-wing agenda, with Gov. Ron DeSantis (R.) threatening to retract Disney's tax-cut privileges and autonomy as a special district. Disney has faced criticism for its open opposition to the Parental Rights in Education Act, dubbed by Democrats as the "Don't Say Gay" bill, which prohibits teachers from discussing sex and gender identity with children younger than the third grade.

Disney has experienced troubles at the box office as well as in streaming. Recent Disney/Pixar movies Lightyear and Strange World, with budgets of $200 million and $180 million, respectively, flopped at the box office. Both films stirred up controversy over explicit LGBT themes in movies intended for children and families.

Last year, Disney’s direct-to-consumer division lost $1.47 billion in the fourth quarter, with then-CEO Bob Chapek expecting profitability in fiscal year 2024. Disney+, the company's streaming service, now has "161.8 million subscribers, down 2.4 million from September," according to Forbes. Disney's stock price has fallen 40 percent from 2021.