Florida governor withdraws special status from Disney after criticizing ‘Don’t Say Like Me’ law

Disney has had decades of power to control part of Orlando, where its theme park is located, as a local government. This enabled Disney, among other things, to collect taxes and ensure basic public services, such as garbage collection and water purification, in the area where Disney World is located.

Republican DeSantis signed a bill Friday that would end that power. Disney has spoken out against the “Don’t Say Gay” law, which bars elementary schools from talking about sexual orientation or gender identity in class.

Disney was initially silent about the law, but after the criticism, the company, which has more than 75,000 employees in Florida, spoke out anyway. CEO Bob Chapek has pledged to support the LGBT community by donating $5 million to the Human Rights Campaign and other organizations to protect LGBT rights. He also said he would speak to DeSantis and Disney would halt all political donations in Florida. At the end of last month, Disney vowed to push for the law to be repealed.

It is not yet known exactly what the consequences of withdrawing Disney’s special status in Florida will be. Among other things, the change could have tax implications for Disney, which has turned the Orlando park chain into one of the world’s most popular tourist spots. Disney has yet to comment on DeSantis’ decision.

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Denton Watson

"Friend of animals everywhere. Evil twitter fan. Pop culture evangelist. Introvert."

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