Current and Former Tesla Employees Sue for Racial Discrimination

Tesla's Fremont factory

Fifteen black current and former Tesla employees have filed a lawsuit against the company, alleging they were subjected to racial abuse and harassment whilst working for the electric vehicle manufacturer.

The workers say that racist language and behavior were commonplace within the company, and that they were subjected to offensive comments by colleagues and managers, according to the lawsuit filed in a California state court.

The majority of the allegations relate to events at Tesla’s factory in Fremont California. The lawsuit alleges that the company’s “standard operating procedures include blatant, open and unmitigated race discrimination”, and that black employees were subjected to racial slurs including the N-word and slavery references.

Beyond verbal harassment, the suit also alleges that some plaintiffs were mistreated due to racial bias, with employees claiming to have been passed over for promotion and excessively assigned to the most physically demanding jobs.

The lawsuit is the latest in a stream of legal actions against Tesla alleging either racial or sexual discrimination, with at least 10 cases currently before the courts. The company is yet to comment on this latest action but has denied any wrongdoing in previous cases.

On Monday, a California judge ordered a new trial after a former Tesla employee turned down a $15 million award over racial discrimination allegations.