What do you think of this change? Are they going too far or not doing enough?
Inclusion at Walt Disney World
The Walt Disney Company aspires to the Keys to the Kingdom which are a set of attributes that Cast Members are meant to keep in mind as the most important pieces of the guest experience.
Until September 2020, there were 4 keys. They are Safety, Courtesy, Show, and Efficiency. The first four keys are listed in order of importance. In 2020, the 5th key was added “Inclusion”. The company aims to reinforce the idea that everyone is welcome at Disney parks.
We have seen many changes since 2020 to help encourage this 5th Key including changes to the classic attraction, Jungle Cruise, and even questionnaires asking about cultural sensitivity at the Disney Parks. Most recently we saw inclusion added to “it’s a small world.”
Cultural Elements Removed
At EPCOT, guests are invited to travel around the World Showcase to visit pavilions to learn the rich and vibrant history of many countries. As guests cross a bridge from Germany to China, an African Outpost invites guests to enjoy refreshments and enjoy a fun market.
Previously, the signage looked quite rustic with tribal caricatures. The signs have been replaced and with this change came new names as well. The former Village Traders are now Amani Village Traders. You would think that this new name change would bring the opening of this store, but it still remains closed.
There are carts set up selling the Creative Soul Photography Disney Princess Dolls and also the Wachonagaii Wood Carvings. We were mesmerized as a wood carver created a giraffe from a block of wood.
Previously tribal masks were at this location. Many felt as though the tribal masks were inaccurate and were replaced with other decorations such as this poster, giraffe mask, and shelf with pots and a plate.
This is the only mask that remains at this location. The other masks were removed and replaced by woven bowls.
Previously tribal masks were at this location. Many felt as though the tribal masks were inaccurate and were replaced with other decorations.
Additional tribal masks were also replaced by a new poster inviting guests to see “The Mara” at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge and also these carvings of both a lion and a rhinoceros.
With many other cultural elements removed, walking sticks are now added to the exterior of the Amani Village Traders building.
At this time, it is still uncertain when the Amani Village Traders may reopen. Interestingly, this store has remained closed for such an extended period of time.
What do you think of these changes? Do you think they are needed or is Disney taking things a bit too far? Share your thoughts with us in the comment section.