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US Appeals Court rules that Elon Musk broke federal labour laws

Elon Musk Potrait

The 5th Circuit US Court of Appeals has upheld a previous ruling by the National Labour Relations Board (NLRB) that found Elon Musk had made unlawful threats on employee remuneration when he tweeted in 2018 that he would remove stock options from employees if they unionised.

A tweet from Elon Musk

At the time, Tesla did contest the finding, stating that there was nothing stopping Tesla workers from joining a union, therefore this can not be considered a threat, but the courts sided with the NLRB, stating the following:

"Because stock options are part of Tesla's employees' compensation, and nothing in the tweet suggested that Tesla would be forced to end stock options or that the UAW would be the cause of giving up stock options, substantial evidence supports the NLRB's conclusion that the tweet is as an implied threat to end stock options as retaliation for unionization."

The court also ordered that the tweet be deleted, and upheld an order that Tesla should reinstate a worker that was previously sacked for organising a union drive at its factory in Fremont, California, and must provide backpay from when they were dismissed in April 2022 up until the date they are reinstated.

This isn't the first time that Elon Musk and Tesla have found themselves in difficulty regarding its handling of human resources within the company. The NLRB also ruled against Tesla last year when it prevented staff members from wearing clothing with any union logos or badges.

Source: Business Insider

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