Disney Parks To Allow Gender-Flexible Costumes, Visible Tattoos For Employees Amid New Focus On Inclusivity

Disney Parks, Experiences and Products Chairman Josh D’Amaro announced on Tuesday that Disney properties were making changes and “creating a place where everyone is welcome.”

D’Amaro said the company had, starting in 2019, engaged employees and come up with a new guiding principle: Inclusion.

D’Amaro wrote in a blog post, “Every Disney Parks cast member is familiar with our longstanding tradition of The Four Keys – Safety, Courtesy, Show and Efficiency – which have guided our approach to guest service for more than 65 years.” He announced that “Inclusion” would become the Fifth Key which, along with the others will “guide us as we interact with guests, collaborate together, create the next generation of Disney products and experiences, and make critical decisions about the future of our business.”

Disney Parks are “reimagining our attractions to be more inclusive…celebrating the diverse and inspiring stories of our cast and fans…looking at ways we can support and uplift our communities through programs like our Disney Dreamers Academy mentorship programs, and we’re including more diverse companies in our supply chain,” wrote the parks Chairman.

One of the most visible changes to park visitors may come in the appearance of cast members.

“We’re looking at other traditions, too,” wrote D’Amaro, “including the policies that guide how our cast members show up for work. Our new approach provides greater flexibility with respect to forms of personal expression surrounding gender-inclusive hairstyles, jewelry, nail styles, and costume choices; and allowing appropriate visible tattoos. We’re updating them to not only remain relevant in today’s workplace, but also enable our cast members to better express their cultures and individuality at work.”

That’s a long way from the Disneyland of old. When the company’s first park was opened in 1955, all facial hair was banned for cast members, even though Walt Disney himself had a mustache. It wasn’t until 2012 that park workers were finally allowed to have beards.

Disneyland will reopen on April 30 more than a year after locking its gates.

“Moving forward, we believe our cast, who are at the center of the magic that lives in all our experiences, can provide the best of Disney’s legendary guest service when they have more options for personal expression – creating richer, more personal and more engaging experiences with our guests,” wrote D’Amaro.

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