- (Photo: Reuters/File)
The Walt Disney Company is expecting to have to lay off workers in its studio and consumer product divisions within the next two weeks, citing the company's plans to reduce overall cost.
A source with direct knowledge of the company's plans said the decision to reduce a portion of Disney's employee base will be primarily focused on Disney studio's marketing, home video units and the animation division, according to a Reuters report.
It was unclear how many job cuts will occur, but Disney, which is headquartered in Burbank, Calif., started an internal cost-cutting review late last year to identify jobs that were not financially viable due to advancements in technology, the source said.
Disney has yet to issue a formal statement regarding the nature of the report or the extent of the layoffs, but after several acquisitions over the past few years, the company was looking at eliminating redundancy within its various departments.
The news of the unverified layoffs comes soon after Disney was hit with a discrimination lawsuit after a family from San Diego claimed that an employee dressed as the White Rabbit- the popular character from Alice in Wonderland- is racist.
The family was enjoying their time at the famed amusement park in Anaheim last August when their 6- year-old son, Jason Black Jr., went up to the character to have his picture taken.
"I went to hug him but he turned his back," Jason told FOX News. "It's made me feel sad because I wanted to really hug him."
The employee in the costume also allegedly refused to hold the hand of his older brother, Elijah, after he attempted to hold the employees hand. The employee continually refused and at one point pushed Elijah's hand away, according to the suit.
The children's father, Jason LeRoy Black Sr., at first had thought that the amusement park had enacted a new policy that prevented the employees in costume from making contact with the children and went about with his family.
However, Black noticed that as the family began to walk away from the White Rabbit, he noticed that two other children, who happened to be white, were hugging and playing with the same character while they posed for pictures.
Dan Gilleon, an attorney representing the family, revealed that the Black family is not seeking a financial settlement, but would like an apology from the park and for the employee to be terminated.
"They're not trying to get something they don't deserve," Gilleon told KUSI. "In fact all they've asked for is a little bit of recognition that this should not have happened."