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Meow Wolf cutting 165 positions across the company, including at Denver location

Meow Wolf Denver
Posted at 9:37 PM, Apr 16, 2024
and last updated 2024-04-18 15:52:28-04

DENVER — Meow Wolf plans to lay off 165 people company-wide, including some at its Denver Convergence Station, according to an internal memo sent Monday.

The company confirmed the cuts to Denver7 Tuesday, saying the move impacts 111 employees across the exhibitions and corporate team as well as 54 bargaining unit positions in Las Vegas.

"When we opened our first exhibitions, we were inventing an operating model from scratch. Over the past three years, we’ve developed a better understanding of our guests and what we need to staff and support our exhibitions in order to make the most of the growth opportunities ahead, including our Houston location that opens later this year," Meow Wolf CEO Jose Tolosa said in a statement. "Saying goodbye to friends and colleagues who have been a big part of Meow Wolf’s success to date will not be easy. We are grateful for their contributions, both creatively and to our community. And we are committed to supporting everyone through this transition as we move forward.”

The company expects the layoffs to cut business expenses by 10%. It is unclear how many Denver employees will be impacted.

Meow Wolf Workers Collective issued the below statement:
Today the Meow Wolf Workers Collective (CWA #7055) learned that the company intended to lay off 98 Union workers, about 10 percent of the workforce. We are still verifying numbers at this time, but this is out of 165 total layoffs, including non union.

These layoffs impact the Santa Fe, Denver, Grapevine, and Las Vegas exhibitions, and our fabrication studio in Santa Fe. Grapevine union jobs seem safe for now. The Union has successfully paused Las Vegas Union layoffs by demanding the company fulfill its obligation to bargain changes in good faith due to the ongoing collective bargaining at that location. These cuts will harm working creatives, many of whom were living at near-poverty conditions before the layoffs. We expect these cuts to greatly impact our ability to not only make art, but to operate our exhibitions. Many of these layoffs were for exhibitions staff and security, people who manage our day-to-day customer service and safety. We are working to mediate these layoffs, but in Santa Fe and Denver Meow Wolf is choosing to continue its pattern of not bargaining in good faith and it is actively pursuing its shameful, fruitless union containment strategies.

It is true, as the company states, that these layoffs come with severance packages. We note that these were hard-won conditions from our last contract, which the company fought against tooth-and-nail and is now taking credit for even as they continue their old union avoidance strategies. We will enumerate those now.

The Denver location opened in 2021 and is Meow Wolf's third and largest permanent exhibition, according to its website.

Meow Wolf is moving forward with its newest location in Houston, which is expected to open later this year.

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