Tesla ban on pro-union shirts violated staff’ rights: NLRB

An aerial view exhibits the Tesla Fremont Factory in Fremont, California on February 10, 2022.

Josh Edelson | AFP | Getty Images

Tesla violated staff’ rights when it informed staff they could not put on shirts with pro-union insignia on the manufacturing unit, The National Labor Relations Board dominated in a choice out Monday.

The NLRB is now mandating that Elon Musk’s electrical car maker “cease and desist from maintaining and enforcing the overly broad team-wear policy that prohibits production associates from wearing black union shirts.”

Tesla will even be required to inform present staff that its “team-wear policy” has been rescinded or revised, and supply a duplicate of any revised coverage.

The determination contradicts a 2019 ruling over costume code insurance policies at Walmart that allowed the retail titan to restrict (however not ban) staff from sporting pro-union insignia at work.

Two members of the labor board dissented on the Tesla ruling, whereas three moved to overrule the prior Walmart determination.

The majority wrote, “when an employer interferes in any way with its employees’ right to display union insignia, the employer must prove special circumstances that justify its interference.” Tesla didn’t exhibit particular circumstances that justified its coverage, the NLRB determined.

Tesla had beforehand argued earlier than the NLRB that its costume code was meant to stop staff’ clothes from “causing mutilations” to the automobiles or automobile seats they have been constructing, and to assist managers “easily determine that employees are in their assigned work areas,” of the corporate’s manufacturing unit.

Former Tesla staff had testified earlier than the NLRB that administration at Tesla made them take away T-shirts with United Auto Workers union messages and logos on them, although they posed no danger of damaging automobiles or automobile seats.

The UAW and Tesla didn’t instantly reply to requests for remark on Monday.

Previously, the NLRB dominated that Tesla CEO Elon Musk violated labor legal guidelines when he urged in a tweet that Tesla staff would want to surrender their inventory choices in the event that they unionized. They mandated that he take away the offending tweet, however Musk and Tesla moved to attraction that call.

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