Two months ago, the government forced several companies deemed not necessary for the proper functioning of the country to close in order to comply with sanitary measures. This is the case for the Tesla plant in Fremont, California. Despite the decision, the American automaker continued to operate its factories a few days before the Alameda County Sheriff reaffirmed the decision.
Elon Musk, emblematic figure of Tesla, does not seem to like this decree, so the entrepreneur has expressed himself on Twitter several times, inviting the government to " liberate america now "
FREE AMERICA NOW
– Elon Musk (@elonmusk) April 29, 2020
The man expressed himself several times in favor of this positioning, thus joining the opinions of several pro-Trump Americans who participated in demonstrations which called for the massive deconfinement of the country.
Like a threatening air at Tesla?
More recently, Elon Musk announced that Tesla was reopening its plant despite the sanitary measures implemented on March 23. Once again, he used Twitter to announce the news, adding: Tesla Restarts Production Today Against Alameda County Rules (…) SIf someone is arrested, I ask that it be only me "
Tesla is restarting production today against Alameda County rules. I will be on the line with everyone else. If anyone is arrested, I ask that it only be me.
– Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 11, 2020
If the reopening is illegal, the man has won the support of Donald Trump, who also used the bluebird social network to declare: " California should let and Elon Musk reopen the plant NOW. It can be done quickly and surely! "
California should let Tesla & @elonmusk open the plant, NOW. It can be done Fast & Safely!
– Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 12, 2020
In this particular context and despite the illegality of the reopening of the Tesla factory, Elon Musk would put pressure on his employees to return to work, otherwise they could lose their unemployment benefits.
In an email to which The Guardian had access, Musk writes: " If you don't feel comfortable coming to work, you can stay home and be on leave without pay. By choosing not to show up for work, you risk losing or reducing your right to unemployment, according to your state employment agency "
Several Tesla employees chatted anonymously with the English daily, saying for example: They try intimidation and threatening tactics, saying that if you don't show up, there is no more unemployment (…) Until the Alameda County health officer, Dr. Erica Pan, says otherwise, I won't be there "
Another Tesla employee added, " They said that I will no longer be on leave and that I will no longer be able to collect wages. But many of us have not cashed at all. In fact, I started quarantine a week before Tesla closed and I received nothing except the two weeks that Tesla paid us. But I have been out of work since March 13 "
County officials are reportedly not planning to close the plant, and are considering a plan to legally reopen it.