Members of the Service Trades Council approved essentially the same contract during the second vote last night. It lost by a 2% margin the first time around and won by a 6% margin this time. Translation: 47% of voters are still unhappy with the terms of the contract. That means there is likely some acrimony out there as a couple quotes in the Orlando Sentinel reveals.
I think it’s in Disney’s best interest to try and woo as many of those 47% over to their side in the next three years. They will be unable to hire replacements for all of them if the CMs get fed up and leave. Unannounced raises (to better fit the payscale of the local economy), better benefits, reaching out to family members, and going the extra mile to accomodate scheduling needs (as much as is possible without effecting show or safety) would go a long way to making the next contract negotiation a non-issue. It is the perception of those 47% that Disney is nickle and diming the employees at every chance they get to the detriment show or just to save a few dollars in the short term, while risking the long term. (Take the tipping issue with the Disney Dining Plan as an example, why Disney would suggest to essentially take away the CMs tips is beyond me.)
No matter how much economic power union members have behind them in negotiations, if you can’t muster the will for a strike among the members, it will be hard to negotiate a deal that is universally loved. In the end, I think this was a pretty good deal for both sides, but Cast Members could have gotten a bit more. (Read)