The Walt Disney Co. has apologized to its LGBTQ+ employees for largely remaining silent on Florida's Parental Rights in Education bill, which has been dubbed the "Don't Say Gay" bill by activists.
Disney CEO Bob Chapek told employees, "You needed me to be a stronger ally in the fight for equal rights and I let you down. I am sorry.”
Chapek added that Disney is pausing political donations in Florida and “increasing our support for advocacy groups to combat similar legislation in other states."
Chapek told shareholders Wednesday that they "were opposed to the bill from the outset" but did not speak out publicly about it "because we thought we could be more effective working behind the scenes, engaging directly with lawmakers on both sides of the aisle," according to CNBC.com and NPR.
The bill, which passed in the Florida legislature, is awaiting Gov. Ron DeSantis' signature. He reaffirmed his support for the bill on Thursday.
"In the state of Florida, we are not going to allow them to inject transgenderism into kindergarten," DeSantis said during a re-election campaign stop in Boca Raton, according to Scripps station WPTV.
DeSantis' campaign also sent an email to supporters Thursday, labeling Disney as "woke" and claiming the company is "echoing Democrat propaganda."