ANAHEIM, Calif. — On Disneyland’s Main Street, Emily Bertola spends hours working on her feet, embroidering names onto mouse ears at the Mad Hatter shop, where she has been an employee for the last two years. She usually offers visitors the sunny smile she was trained to give.
None of her customers know that for months, she slept in the back of her truck, showering at the park before her shift.
Her struggle is hardly unique to Disneyland.
Orange County is known for its affluence, and for its tourist industry. But the thousands of workers who keep its resorts, restaurants and hotels running are sometimes struggling to stay afloat.
As the state grapples with soaring housing costs, workers in California earning just above the minimum wage find it difficult to pay for basic costs. Many employees at Disneyland have moved farther inland, driving hours each day to work. Others, like Ms. Bertola, have opted to move from couch-to-couch or sleep in their cars for months at a time.
Disney's profit surges in the first quarter, but revenue disappoints amid struggles in media networks
Walt Disney Co. delivered stronger-than-expected profit in the first quarter — thanks partly to a federal tax cut — but its revenue dipped below Wall Street's estimates as the Burbank company saw continued declines at its ESPN cable channels and ABC broadcast network.
Disney reported net income of $4.42 billion, up 78% from a year earlier, boosted by a $1.6-billion one-time tax benefit from the new federal income tax legislation.
Analysts had predicted adjusted earnings per share of $1.61 on revenue of $15.5 billion, according to FactSet, and Disney delivered adjusted per-share earnings of $1.89 on revenue of $15.4 billion, up 4%.
Tenants and landlord groups debated rent control before the Santa Ana City Council Tuesday, Feb. 6, clashing over the merits of the controversial law in the majority renter city.
A study session about whether rent control helps or harms rent-burdened tenants drew about 40 speakers on both sides of the issue, amid cheers and applause from supporters for both positions.
“I can tell you, rent control does not work,” business owner Frank Alvarez, a board member of the Apartment Association of Orange County, told the council. “I’ve seen the issues with maintenance. I’ve seen the issues with blight. … It’s detrimental to investment.”
If Denise Anderson, a 27-year costume worker at Disneyland, gets a one-time, $1,000 bonus this year, she has no illusions that it will better her life in the long run.
“Working for Disneyland, you live paycheck to paycheck,” she said. “Maybe I could use it to pay off a medical bill that’s been hanging over my head.”
The Walt Disney Co. announced this week that as “a result of the recently enacted tax reform” law signed by President Donald Trump in December, it would pay out one-time, $1,000 cash bonuses to 125,000 full- and part-time non-executive employees.
The company, with annual revenues of $55 billion, is among more than a dozen businesses, including AT&T, Wal-Mart and Verizon, that recently announced bonuses.
But a sentence in the company’s press release has raised alarm among the company’s 30,000 Disneyland employees, most of whom belong to one of the park’s 26 unions.
After the repeated attacks this year on the rights of women, immigrants, and the poor, it is more important than ever to organize across all social justice movements and make our voices heard. This time last year, 20,000 people stood in the streets of Santa Ana unified on women’s rights, social justice, and human rights. We marched to show that we are here and our voices are loud and strong. On Saturday January 20, 2018 we will take another step to support human rights and lift our voices in solidarity.
As a single mother on my journey from a front desk agent to becoming the co-president of an important Union in our region, I learned how important it is to advocate for myself and to teach others how to do the same. This journey continues as we come together at the 2018 O.C. Women’s March. There is much to stand up and march for.
I march for immigrant, low-wage women to have a voice on the job and equity in pay. I march for the mother who made a dangerous journey from a war torn country and works her fingers to the bone to provide a safe, healthy life for her little ones. She deserves a fair chance and fair pay for the work she has put in.
I march for the father who’s committed his life to helping the American economy thrive by building a business that supports our community. He shouldn’t be taken from his family over a policy. Family members shouldn’t be forcefully ripped apart from one another.
I march for their daughter and son, who dream of a future in the only place they have ever lived and known. They deserve safety, opportunity, and chance to hope – and most importantly, they deserve to sleep each night with loving parents nearby, not mourning their loss or living in fear of an ICE raid.
I march to keep immigrant families together. I march for comprehensive immigration reform.
Why do you march?
On January 20th, I will be at the second annual O.C. Women’s March in downtown Santa Ana, and I hope to see you there in solidary with us, for all the reasons you march. www.OCWomensMarch.org
Everyone deserves to live and work in safe, friendly, and clean communities. Short term rentals threaten to disrupt that for Garden Grove residents.
Over the past few months, the city of Garden Grove has reported an increase in resident complaints about short-term rentals in residential neighborhoods. As a neighboring city to popular tourist destinations such as Disneyland, Universal Studios, Knott’s Berry Farm, and other destinations, Garden Grove is an attractive location for tourists. Currently, renting a private house or room for less than 30 days is illegal in the city of Garden Grove, and it’s in the city’s best interest to maintain that status.
Short term rental (STR) corporations hide STR’s negative effects. In reality, the STR industry imposes its business costs onto residents, neighborhoods, and cities.
STRs consist of rented-out homes, apartments and other living spaces for short-term stays. STR corporations that offer these services, like AirBnB, publicize people could “optimize one’s greatest asset,” by helping them rent out their homes to make additional money to pay off their mortgages or purchase necessary items.” However, while some individuals may benefit from some profit, the presence of STRs in a neighborhood introduces a host of problems by creating unregulated mini hotels.
Four Orange County Congressional Districts that pundits predict will be competitive races in November’s national election fight to control the House of Representatives have been flooded with 32 candidates as Democrats target the Republican-held seats and gear up for the June primary.
“It’s unbelievable, the record breaking numbers of candidates,” Orange County Democratic Party Chairwoman Fran Sdao said. “We typically have a hard time finding a Democrat to run, so this year we have the opposite problem.”
Democrats need to take at least 24 House seats throughout the country in order to win control. Currently, the House has 239 Republicans, 193 Democrats and three vacancies. The June 5 primary will narrow the Orange County field to the top two vote getters in each Congressional district, regardless of political party.
The OC Women's March Coalition is proud to announce the date for the 2nd Annual March On Washington - Orange County!!
On January 21, 2017 we marched and lifted up our voices letting the nation know, Womens' rights are human rights! Since then, we have built a movement, called, wrote letters all to protect women's rights on so many levels. The time has come to march again, grow our movement and continue the change we started. Will you be a part of the change?
Plans for a 769-room, three hotel resort in Garden Grove will move forward after the City Council approved a development agreement that hands over a 5.18-acre property to the developer for $852,571 in fees.
The hotels, on Harbor Boulevard, are part of an overall strategy the city to benefit from its proximity to Disneyland, the Anaheim Convention Center and other tourist attractions.
The project, spearheaded by Land & Design and the American subsidiary of the Shanghai Construction Group, includes three different hotels with 39,867 square feet of conference and meeting room space, 36,885 square feet of entertainment/restaurant space, and a 1,297-space parking structure.
It comes with a package of subsidies as part of an agreement approved in April 2013. In addition to giving the site, known as Site C, to the developer, the city will pay up to $250,000 in improvements to the site and give the developer tax subsidies worth at least $17.6 million. The city’s former redevelopment agency paid $15.6 million for the Site C property on the corner of Harbor Boulevard and Twintree Lane.
Beefed-up citizen oversight of the Anaheim Police Department will be considered by the City Council Tuesday with the underlying issue a report by the American Civil Liberties Union of Southern California (ACLU), which found Anaheim to be among the nation’s worst cities for deaths at the hands of police.
Council members Dec. 5 are scheduled to discuss the creation of a new police review board to replace a citizen review commission, the Public Safety Board, created in response to July 2012 police shootings that killed two young Latino men and sparked civil unrest and riots in front of City Hall.
The discussion comes on the heels of the Nov. 20 release of the ACLU report which found Anaheim ranks ninth among 60 of the largest U.S. cities for police-involved deaths. Anaheim Acting Police Chief Julian Harvey disputed the findings, and said the city actually ranks 27th.
Critics of the Public Safety Board – a pilot board that ran from 2014 to 2016 – contend it lacked purpose and authority.