From the Tesla factory workers are fired for sick leave and decree. 2-minute delay may cost a careerJuly 10, 2019
Former employees of the factory where Tesla meets, told The Guardian that the company practices layoffs in response to sick leave or childcare leave. And that the company is punished, if you take the official paid time off.
In February 2018, Devon Becker began working at the Tesla gig factory in Nevada. After a couple of months, she was promoted to supervisor, with a payment of $ 25 per hour. In July of the same year, she discovered that she was pregnant and informed the management that she was going on leave to care for a child in February 2019. December 14, 2018 she was fired. “In Nevada, they didn’t need a reason to fire me, but it was very convenient to do it two weeks before Christmas and 50 days before my decree,” she says.
At the 28th week of pregnancy, Becker lost her medical insurance and the only source of income; after the baby was born, their family had to literally look for money for diapers. A company representative, in a commentary to the publication, noted that this employee was fired because of inefficiency.
Over the past few years, the company has several times been faced with lawsuits, accusations from the National Labor Relations Board of the United States in connection with the working conditions at its factories. At a factory in Buffalo, workers sued the company with charges that Tesla had fired people for organizing trade unions.
The Guardian investigation found cases of unfair dismissal, threats of disciplinary punishment and dismissal for sick leave.
Jennifer Piercy has been working in the company as a technical support agent in Las Vegas since August 2018. The mother of four children, she was in the fifth month of pregnancy, when colleagues suggested that she use their official time off to have time for children. But the company’s management explained that it’s impossible to share working time. She stopped the practice, but she was still fired for it two weeks later.
“I am 22 weeks pregnant, without work or income, and I have four daughters that I have to take care of. If I knew, I would never accept this help, ”she says.
Now she is applying for unemployment benefits and is looking for a job, but still hopes to return to Tesla. Jennifer showed the publication of the letter of resignation and her letter addressed to Ilona Mask. It led to another meeting with an HR specialist who confirmed her dismissal.
“We sympathize with her life situation, but using personal data of employees for personal benefit, with or without their consent, violates our policy,” the company representative explained in a commentary to the publication.
Maggie Aranda worked at the Fremont factory for 19 months before she was fired on 11 June. She worked 12-hour shifts 6-7 days a week to provide a sick husband.
“I repeated the same action 150-175 times a day. This has led to bilateral carpal and ulnar tunnel syndrome. One night I was so exhausted that I fell on the steps and hit my face on the bumper of the car in front, ”she writes.
“My supervisor allowed me to use the phone to contact my husband, who was very sick at the time. Then I was allowed to finish the shift earlier and go home. They conducted an “investigation” and dismissed me for using the phone, ”she says.
Her husband, who also worked at the same factory, but was on sick leave, filed a letter of resignation on June 24, but received a response from the HR department that he was fired on the 26th. Now the couple has remained homeless, because both have lost their jobs, they are treating injuries at work and are trying to raise money for GoFundMe.
A company spokesman confirmed that Maggie was fired for using the phone, and her husband for a tweet that violated the company’s standards.
At the factory in Fremont, according to several employees, a penalty points system is used for being absent from the workplace, which prevents the use of sick leave and interferes with your career development.
“For two years I was not promoted just because I was a couple of minutes late for a couple of minutes because it was difficult to find a place in the parking lot,” one of the employees told the publication.
The worker reported threats of dismissal after he was asked to go to work on Saturday, and he agreed, but with the condition to go home early to cash the check and pay for the rent. “The supervisor agreed, and then I received a message that this was considered as an unauthorized departure from the workplace,” he says.
Another employee talked about how he was awarded penalty points for being on sick leave, as it was considered as an unplanned time off.
The publication refers to a copy of the policy of visiting work in the company, which threatens to dismiss employees with experience of more than three months if they score 4.5 penalty points in six months. The company denies the existence of punishments for paid sick leave and time off.
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