Meet the Haitian immigrant leading the fight for Disney workers’ rights

May 19, 2016

From the outside looking in, Walt Disney World appears to be a magical place. Princesses and princes roam the streets. Every day, fireworks light up the sky at the Disney Castle.

Meanwhile, inside its hotels, Wilna Destin is leading a struggle for economic justice and workers’ rights. A Haitian immigrant who moved to Florida in 2011, Destin was recently elected an organizer with the Union of Needletrades, Industrial and Textile Employees and Hotel and Restaurant Employees (UNITE HERE) Local 737.

Destin is committed to creating better conditions for workers from all backgrounds but also creating room for Black women’s leadership. Destin is among the Black women featured in “And Still I Rise,” a 2015 report from the Washington, D.C.-based Institute for Policy Studies highlighting Black women’s leadership in labor unions. The report notes that while Black women lead all women in labor force participation they earn just 64 cents on every dollar earned by white men and are underrepresented in fields that pay family-supporting wages.


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