ESPN employees included in decision by Walt Disney Co. to mandate covid-19 vaccine

Published on Monday, 2 August 2021 13:08


BRISTOL -- The announcement made last week by the Walt Disney Co. that all employees will need to be vaccinated against covid-19 includes the approximate 4,000 employees who work for ESPN.

Disney, which owns the Bristol-based sports broadcasting company, said Friday that it would be requiring the vaccine. The announcement comes as cases of covid-19 are rising across the country, with many concerns expressed by health officials about the Delta variant.

“At the Walt Disney Co., the safety and well-being of our employees during the pandemic has been and continues to be a top priority,” Disney said in a statement.

“Based on the latest recommendations of scientists, health officials and our own medical professionals that the covid-19 vaccine provides the best protection against severe infection, we are requiring that all salaried and non-union hourly employees in the U.S. working at any of our sites be fully vaccinated,” the company continued.

ESPN spokesperson Mike Soltys confirmed to The Bristol Press that the vaccine policy extends to those who work for the sports network.

ESPN’s main headquarters sits at 935 Middle St., while its North Campus is just up the road at 383 Middle St.

Disney’s sweeping policy follows ESPN notifying those who work live events for the sports company that they needed to be vaccinated by Sunday.

“In late May we notified the thousands of people who work at events for us that they had to be vaccinated by Aug. 1,” Soltys said Monday. “A number of hosts for sporting events are requiring vaccinations for workers so we implemented it then in our remote sports event business.”

The Walt Disney Co. last week said employees will have two months to get vaccinated.

“Employees who aren’t already vaccinated and are working on-site will have 60 days from today to complete their protocols and any employees still working from home will need to provide verification of vaccination prior to their return, with certain limited exceptions,” Disney said Friday. “Vaccines are the best tool we all have to help control this global pandemic and protect our employees.”

Justin Muszynski can be reached at 860-973-1809 or

Posted in The Bristol Press, Bristol on Monday, 2 August 2021 13:08. Updated: Monday, 2 August 2021 13:11.