The actress, who stars alongside Zach Braff in the studioâ€™s upcoming Disney Plus reimagining of â€œCheaper by the Dozen,â€ voiced her dismay regarding the situation on the red carpet for the streaming release.
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â€œSomebody asked me, â€˜Are you disappointed?â€™ Iâ€™m disappointed when my order isnâ€™t right at In-N-Out. I donâ€™t even think thatâ€™s a word that you could use for something like this, where childrenâ€™s lives are literally hanging in the balance,â€ Union told Variety at the premiere. â€œWe need to own that if you truly are taking stands against hate and oppression, you should not fund hate and oppression. Period. The damage is done.â€
The Walt Disney Company and CEO Bob Chapek have been embroiled in controversy over the past weeks for the corporationâ€™s initial decision to take a soft stance on new legislation in Florida, popularly dubbed the â€œDonâ€™t Say Gayâ€ bill, which would limit discussions regarding gender identity and sexual orientation in educational environments. The bill was passed by the stateâ€™s House of Representatives on Feb. 24 and the state Senate in early March.
On top of that, Variety learned that Chapek had received a letter from LGBTQIA+ employees at Disney requesting that company take a public stance condemning the bill. An Orlando Sentinel report on Feb. 25 also revealed that Disney has donated money to every single sponsor and co-sponsor of the bill.
â€œThere are so many states that are following suit [with Floridaâ€™s legislation], because there is no pushback, because no one in positions of power [or] corporations are taking a hard stance,â€ Union continued. â€œLetâ€™s look whoâ€™s donating to what and letâ€™s call people outâ€¦ I think a lot of people like to confuse accountability and consequences for cancel culture. And as long as you have a microphone and a stage thatâ€™s not cancel culture, honeyâ€¦ We have to campaign and fund for those people who stand for all of us.â€
When asked on the topic of Disney associates reaching out to Chapek, Union hypothesized, â€œI think a lot of people reached out to him. And if you have to see my child for that to be to be the difference maker, thatâ€™s not enough. Thereâ€™s a lot of kids out there, not just famous ones.â€
A group of LGBTQIA+ employees at The Walt Disney Company are planning a week of staff walkouts in response to the Chapekâ€™s handling of the â€œDonâ€™t Say Gayâ€ bill.
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