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Disney CEO Bob Chapek Apologizes to LGBTQ Employees, Announces Pause for Political Donations in Florida

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variety.com

Adam B. Vary Senior Entertainment WriterAfter weeks of internal strife and external controversy surrounding the Walt Disney Company’s lack of public response to the “Don’t Say Gay” legislation in Florida, CEO Bob Chapek announced in a company email on Friday that Disney will pause all political donations in the state during a restructuring of its political giving framework.Chapek also apologized directly to the company’s LGBTQ employees for his widely criticized messaging on the issue.“It is clear that this is not just an issue about a bill in Florida, but instead yet another challenge to basic human rights,” Chapek wrote. “You needed me to be a stronger ally in the fight for equal rights and I let you down.

I am sorry.” The controversy erupted into public view on Monday after a company-wide email sent by Chapek about the “Don’t Say Gay” bill was met with criticism not just from outside observers but rank-and-file Disney employees, an extraordinary rupture of Disney’s tightly controlled public messaging.While Chapek expressed “unwavering commitment to the LGBTQ+ community,” he said that he had chosen not to take a public stance on the legislation.“The biggest impact we can have in creating a more inclusive world is through the inspiring content we produce, the welcoming culture we create here and the diverse community organizations we support, including those representing the LGBTQ+ community,” he wrote.Chapek also said in the Monday memo that Disney had not donated to politicians specifically regarding the “Don’t Say Gay” bill, but they had contributed to “Republican and Democrat legislators who have subsequently taken positions on both sides of the legislation.”By Wednesday, after the bill had been passed by the.

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