Disney's networks among outlets that will air new PSA featuring trans teen

Key Points
  • Disney is one of four companies that will air a new public service from GLAAD that features a transgender teen and calls for nationwide support of LGBTQ youth.
  • The video comes as tensions between Disney and Florida lawmakers have escalated over the passing of Florida's HB 1557 law, which has been dubbed the "Don't Say Gay" bill.
  • The new PSA will be aired by outlets owned by Disney, Comcast, WarnerMedia and Paramount.
Disney employee Nicholas Maldonado holds a sign while protesting outside of Walt Disney World on March 22, 2022 in Orlando, Florida. Employees are staging a company-wide walkout today to protest Walt Disney Co.'s response to controversial legislation passed in Florida known as the “Don’t Say Gay” bill.
Octavio Jones | Getty Images News | Getty Images

With tensions high between The Walt Disney Company and Florida lawmakers, the entertainment giant, alongside three other major media companies, will air new a new public service announcement from GLAAD featuring a transgender teen which calls for nationwide support of LGBTQ youth.

The PSA centers on Texas mom Amber Briggle and her son Max.

"If you've never met a transgender child before what I want you to know is that that child is no different than yours," Briggle says in the announcement. "They have the same hopes and dreams and deserve the same equality as yours does."

The video launches as several states proposing and passing bills that many see as harmful to LGBTQ youth. This includes legislation such as Florida's HB 1557 law, which has been dubbed the "Don't Say Gay" bill, as well as a Texas directive, which was recently barred, that called for investigations of parents of transgender children for child abuse.

The new PSA will be aired by outlets owned by Disney, Comcast, WarnerMedia and Paramount.

Disney's participation comes at a time when company executives are working to be more aggressive in advocating for LGBTQ rights. CEO Bob Chapek, in particular, came under scrutiny in the past month for not publicly opposing Florida's "Don't Say Gay" legislation until after it passed through the Florida Senate.

The company has vowed to help repeal the new law which forbids instruction on sexual orientation and gender identity in public schools for kindergarten through third grade.

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Gov. Ron DeSantis, a Republican, has been critical of Disney since its executives came out against the legislation calling the company "woke" and threatening to repeal the 1967 Reedy Creek Improvement Act, which allows Disney to act as its own government within the outer limits of Orange and Osceola counties in Florida.

Amid this discord, Disney hired Kristina Schake as its new executive vice president of global communications. Schake was a cofounder of the organization behind a federal lawsuit challenging Proposition 8, a California state constitutional amendment that was intended to ban same-sex marriage.

The company also announced Wednesday earmarked nearly 80 acres of land in Florida for affordable housing to be built upon. The new development is expected to include more than 1,300 units and offer residents a variety of home choices located in close proximity to schools.

"We are invested in working together with our community to solve complex issues," said Jeff Vahle, president of Walt Disney World Resort, in a statement.

Disclosure: Comcast is the parent company of NBCUniversal and CNBC.

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