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  • By The Financial District

German Unions Dare Elon Musk: Punish Workers Opposed To WFH Policy

Elon Musk sent a series of emails to Tesla employees and executives on Tuesday describing a termination of “work from home” policies, which brought on a wide range of reactions.


Photo Insert: Germany’s largest trade union, IG Metall, which is based in the same German state where Tesla’s Gigafactory Berlin is located, voiced a harsh reaction to Musk’s ultimatum.



Germany’s largest trade union, IG Metall, which is based in the same German state where Tesla’s Gigafactory Berlin is located, voiced a harsh reaction to Musk’s ultimatum, Joey Klender reported for Teslarati, a publication tracking Musk’s hype.


The new policy was met with a critical response from IG Metall, the German trade union that looked to establish a works council at Giga Berlin prior to its start of production.



“Whoever does not agree with such one-sided demands and wants to stand against them has the power of unions behind them in Germany, as per law,” Birgit Dietze, IG Metall’s District Leader in the State, Reuters reported.


Tesla employs 4,000 people at the German factory, which has been operational since January 2022. The plant will expand to 12,000 workers when it reaches full production capacity. Tesla employees at the plant have already elected 19 people to run its initial workers’ council.


All the news: Business man in suit and tie smiling and reading a newspaper near the financial district.

This is a drastically different operation than Tesla’s other facilities, as Musk has always opposed unionization but has offered UAW officials to hold a vote at the company’s Fremont factory in Northern California.


Germany does not currently have any laws that would highlight work-from-home rights. However, the country’s Labor Ministry is working to increase flexibility, especially as remote work became more popular during the COVID-19 pandemic. Many employers globally are adopting the strategy as a permanent solution.


Business: Business men in suite and tie in a work meeting in the office located in the financial district.

Musk believes Tesla’s disruptive products cannot be developed through telework and require face-to-face interaction with colleagues. “There are, of course, companies that don’t require this, but when was the last time they shipped a great new product?” Musk asked.


“It’s been a while.” Game developers, economists from the US, Germany, France, Italy, and Japan have debunked Musk’s claim, saying facts do not support the multi-billionaire’s grotesque ideas and gothic behavior.



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