Court Rules Elon Musk Broke Federal Labor Law with 2018 Tweet :- Federal appeals court determined that Tesla CEO Elon Musk infringed US labor law in 2018 after tweeting that Tesla manufacturing workers would lose their stock options if they choose to organize. A decision from the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) that determined Musk made illegal threats about employee remuneration was maintained by the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals.
According to a federal appeals court, Elon Musk infringed US labor law in 2018 when he tweeted that Tesla plant workers would forfeit stock options if they choose to organize. The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed a National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) finding that Musk made illegal threats about employee remuneration on Friday, according to a judgement seen by Business Insider.
A Twitter user questioned Musk about his position on unions in May 2018. “Nothing prevents the Tesla staff at our auto facility from voting union,” he said. Could do so tomorrow if they desired,” he said through Twitter. So why do I have to pay union dues and forfeit my stock options? Our safety record has improved two times since the UAW operated the facility, and everyone has access to healthcare.
The post in question was Musk’s reply to an inquiry from a Twitter user regarding his position on unions. Tesla said, “There is nothing preventing our vehicle plant’s Tesla crew from voting union. could if they choose do so tomorrow. So why should I pay union dues and forfeit my stock options? Our safety record has improved two times since the UAW operated the facility, and everyone has access to healthcare.”
In 2021, the NLRB determined Musk had intimidated employees in breach of labor rules after swift action from labor groups. Tesla countered that Musk’s statement was intended to draw attention to the fact that employees at other automakers do not receive stock options. The NLRB, on the other hand, had a different perspective; in fact, its head Wilma Liebman predicted that “the employee is going to hear it as, ‘If I vote to unionize, stock options will no longer be a possibility.'”
According to the Fifth Circuit Court, “strong evidence supports the NLRB’s determination that the tweet is an implicit threat to discontinue stock options as punishment for unionization.” They also concurred with the NLRB’s judgement.
The tweet is still active as of the time of writing, but the court ordered Musk to remove it.
In addition, the court affirmed a National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) directive that Tesla restore Richard Ortiz, a worker whom the manufacturer sacked for supporting employee organization at its Fremont facility in California.