Musk Sued Over Tesla’s Alleged ‘Toxic Workplace’: Just The Latest In A Rough Week

Tesla investor Elon Musk filed a lawsuit against the CEO on Thursday. The suit stemmed from claims that Musk failed to respond to discrimination and harassment complaints. This is the latest in a tough week for Musk, who fired several employees complaining about Musk’s “embarrass[ing]” behavior and met with employees at Twitter in their first meeting since Musk’s $44 Billion takeover bid was approved by its board.

Solomon Chau, a Tesla shareholder, claimed that Tesla had “created an inhospitable workplace grounded in racist, sexist abuses and discrimination” towards its employees. This was in a lawsuit filed in federal Texas’ Western District court.

After California’s Department of Fair Employment and Housing filed a suit in February against Tesla, the complaint alleges that Black workers at Fremont, Calif., faced “rampant racism.”

This week, Musk was the subject of a separate lawsuit in federal courts for $258 billion for allegedly manipulating Dogecoin’s price.

SpaceX, where Musk is the CEO, also fired a few employees this week, who signed a letter calling Musk “a frequent source for distraction and embarrassment.”

On Thursday, Musk was confronted with a host of questions by anxious Twitter employees worried about Musk’s policies regarding remote work and possible layoffs.

Forbes reached Musk for comment, but he did not respond.

$14 billion. This is how much Musk’s wealth, the most wealthy person in this world, shrank Thursday as Tesla shares fell 8.5%.

Due to lower production in China due to Covid restrictions, job losses, and a decline in its share price, Tesla has experienced a challenging fourth quarter. Musk mentioned earlier this month that he would cut 10% of Tesla’s salaried employees due to a “super bad” feeling about the economy. Electrek reported Friday that these cuts could now include hourly workers.

Musk’s comments about remote work have also caused controversy. He told Tesla employees via email that they must work at the office for a minimum of 40 hours per week. This concern was raised by Twitter employees who met with Musk virtually in their first town hall meeting. Musk suggested that there might be layoffs and said workers should “get well” while adding “excellent” employees to the company.

Over the years, Tesla has been subject to lawsuits alleging racism and discrimination at work. After a former Tesla elevator operator allegedly called him the N-word and told him to “go home to Africa,” a federal jury initially awarded $137 million to the employee. However, a judge reduced those funds to $ 15 million after Tesla challenged that verdict. California Department of Fair Employment & Housing’s suit opposed to Tesla was based on numerous claims by Black workers that they were subject to racial slurs, were given lower-level jobs, and were less likely to be promoted to higher levels. Tesla called the suit ” misguided,” stating that it “strongly opposes all forms of discrimination or harassment.”

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Adam Collins
Adam writes about technology, business and economics. With master's degree in Economics, he's presented six papers in international conferences. As a solivagant in the constant state of fernweh, curiosity is the main weapon in his arsenal.

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