A few days ago members of the Unite HERE Local 11 were reportedly seen handing out flyers near Disneyland. Normally this would be an acceptable behavior for a union that is in a three year dispute with the theme park and resort over benefits, working conditions, and wages for its members. But this time they may have gone a step too far.
These handouts are not in the form of warnings about Disney’s anti-union practices, but rather warning parents about how Disneyland is a magnet for “Pedophiles”. Here’s the full text and you can decide for yourself if this is appropriate:
Keep your Children Close
Places like Disneyland Are Magnets For “Pedophiles”
“Pedophiles” are people with sexual interest in children.
The Anaheim Police were called to Disneyland 64 times from 2005-2010 to investigate “sex offenses” – 9 of them in the first half of 2010
As of August 20th, there are 266 Registered Sex Offenders in Anaheim, including 23 offenders in the zip code that Disneyland is located in.
(Note there may be additional text, but I’ve only been shown that portion. I’ll update when I get more details (btw, if you have a flyer, I’d appreciate if you send me a photo of the front and back).)
Using misleading statistics to scare tourists is lower than low. It hurts the potential future earnings of the union employees and makes the union look bad for using scare tactics. The headlines suggest that Disneyland is infested with dangerous people, but the Anaheim Police investigations for “sex offenses” cover a whole range of incidents, not inappropriate behavior of an adult to a child, but adult on adult and child on child. There is no statistical relevance to that charge.
The fact that 266 registered sex offenders live in Anaheim is also mostly irrelevant. Conditions of parole for many sex offenders keep them away from schools, playgrounds, and other areas where children are present. There have been only a few stories and police reports, not unusual for an employer of Disneyland’s size, suggesting that they are finding their way to Disneyland or that they’re causing any problems at all.
If this truly was a union action, and it looks like it was, I think Unite Here will have to officially disband now. It just lost all bargaining ability with Disneyland. In fact, I wouldn’t blame Disney at all for even refusing to take phone calls, let alone enter negotiations. You can’t negotiate with someone who uses these obscene scare tactics.
I was previously 100% behind the union for standing up to Disney and demanding better health care and working conditions for their employees. But if this was a union action, I must now withdraw that support.
Thanks to MousePlanet.com for their original reporting on this story.