Gamache-Griffiths, Donna

Advisor Department

Global Business




Employment Law; Walt Disney Company; Business; Business Law


“Fantasy and reality often overlap,” was once said by Walt Disney. In my story, Where Reality Meets Fantasy, Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, Goofy and Gelatoni, from DisneySea, dive into the world of employment law and how it affects the Walt Disney Company.

Walt Disney loved storytelling and it is demonstrated in his movies and parks. With his company’s emphasis on safety, courtesy, show and efficiency, Disney wanted not only his guests but also his cast members to enjoy being at the Happiest Place on Earth. With laws like the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 and the Civil Rights Act of 1964, cast member safety and happiness at the work place must be held to the highest standard. Courtesy requires cast members to be kind to guests but also requires the Walt Disney Company to care about its cast members. Show connects to Disney’s emphasis on consistency. It does not make legal sense as to why Disney is allowed to hire someone as Cinderella who looks like Cinderella, but reject all other applicants based solely upon their physical appearance. The need to protect their brand and provide consistency makes it legal. Efficiency also can connect to the Occupational Safety and Health Act in order to keep its cast members safe while providing effective service.

Due to copyright law, I am able to use these iconic Disney characters to teach others about employment law because of the Fair Use Doctrine. This allows teachers and students to use these copyrighted items for educational and teaching purposes. Although the characters are Walt Disney Company’s property, the story I created will be from my own research of employment law.

After Walt’s passing, he left his good pal Mickey in charge of his company. One day, Mickey’s friends Donald, Goofy and Gelatoni begin searching for job opportunities at the Walt Disney Parks around the world. Through Mickey’s help, they are all able to learn about employment law. In this story, readers can better understand how an American can work in a foreign country, how the United States’ employment law protects its employees in the work place, and how a foreign citizen can work in the United States. Come along with these four pals, to learn and have fun, in the Happiest Place on Earth.