LOS ANGELES (CNS) - Thousands of workers at Disney are being laid off this week, starting Monday, as part of the media company's previously announced plan to cut its workforce by 7,000 employees.
It is the second round of layoffs this year, and cuts are expected at ESPN, Disney's entertainment division, Disney Parks and Disney's Experiences and Product division. It is part of Disney's Chief Executive Bob Iger's plan announced in February in order to save $5.5 billion in costs, according to the company.
Disney has theme parks, Disneyland and California Adventure, in Anaheim, ESPN offices in downtown Los Angeles and studios in Burbank.
The cuts are expected to take place through Thursday and bring the number of jobs lost across the country to 4,000 according to media reports. The layoffs are not expected to affect hourly workers at Disney's theme parks and resorts.
A third and final wave of layoffs are expected in the beginning of summer and bring the total number of layoffs to around 7,000.
Disney had about 220,000 workers as of Oct. 1, about 160,000 of those in the United States. The 7,000 layoffs represent about 3% of Disney's global workforce.
"The difficult reality of many colleagues and friends leaving Disney is not something we take lightly," Iger said in a memo to staff last month. "In tough moments, we must always do what is required to ensure Disney can continue delivering exceptional entertainment to audiences and guests around the world -- now, and long into the future."