This year, the Tesla factory in Fremont, California, has been hit with accusations of bullying, harassment and intimidation that prompted Tesla’s chief executive, Elon Musk, to tweet that the problem would be “brought to a very rapid close.”
Now, it appears another problem is brewing. Last week, a current Tesla employee filed a lawsuit alleging she was fired after complaining of harassment and discrimination in June and that she is the subject of an unfair termination investigation, according to the San Francisco Chronicle. The plaintiff, identified as Jane Doe in the lawsuit, alleges that she had experienced frequent sexual harassment during her employment and that Tesla’s human resources department failed to protect her against the harassment, despite her repeated claims that it was occurring.
Jane Doe is one of six unnamed plaintiffs who are suing Tesla in a class-action suit for alleged violations of the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Act. In addition to the EEOC, the plaintiff is also seeking damages under California’s Fair Employment and Housing Act, as well as several other claims. Tesla did not return requests for comment by deadline.
Tesla has responded to Jane Doe’s suit with a statement saying: “The allegations made in this lawsuit are completely without merit. We are going to fight back. We have already begun that process. Tesla employs tens of thousands of people across the company with a healthy work-life balance. We believe strongly in treating all employees fairly and with respect. We have zero tolerance for discrimination of any kind.”
Tesla’s internal misconduct allegations recently hit the national spotlight when Musk fired off a series of tweets blaming the employee dissatisfaction at the Fremont factory on “leakage” and “employee culture.” He later clarified that he was talking about performance at Tesla, not the culture of the workplace, though Tesla has since said that more than 20 employees have been fired for bringing allegations of harassment and discrimination to the attention of the company.
At the same time, Tesla received criticism after the arrest of an employee named Jason Conley, who was allegedly caught on camera allegedly raping a customer. Tesla issued a statement at the time that condemned Conley’s alleged behavior but said that Tesla had no idea that he was being investigated for such an incident.
Read the full story at The Wall Street Journal.
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