Tesla ordered by NLRB Elon Musk to delete anti-union tweet

Elon Musk, founder of SpaceX and CEO of Tesla, salutes as he arrives for a discussion at the 2020 Satellite Conference in Washington, DC, on Monday, March 9, 2020.

Andrew Harrer | Bloomberg | fake images

The National Labor Relations Board has ruled that Tesla violated labor laws when it fired a union activist and when CEO Elon Musk wrote on Twitter in 2018: “Nothing stopped the Tesla team at our auto plant from voting for the union. Tmrw could if they wanted to. But why pay union dues and give up stock options for nothing?”

The federal agency has ordered Tesla to ask Musk to remove his offensive tweet and offer the fired employee a job.

The employee was part of an organizing campaign, “Fair Future at Tesla.” At the time of the campaign, Tesla said its business should be kept union free. But Musk’s public comments on his Twitter account, where he has tens of millions of followers, were seen as threatening. Tesla considers Elon Musk’s tweets to be official company communications, as revealed in its financial reports.

News of the decision was previously reported by Bloomberg and confirmed by the United Auto Workers, which filed the lawsuit. The UAW said it was preparing a statement and Tesla was not immediately available for comment.

Thursday’s decision was in line with a September 2019 decision by an administrative law judge, who had previously considered the complaint. Tesla appealed that up to full pension.

This story is unfolding; check back for updates.

Michael Wayland contributed to this report.


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