Tesla sued by second female worker over sexual harassment, retaliation

The lawsuit alleges that Tesla and other defendants failed to prevent and take corrective actions over sexual harassment and retaliation. PHOTO: REUTERS

SAN FRANCISCO (REUTERS) - Tesla is being sued by a second female employee for sexual harassment in less than a month, with the two lawsuits alleging a "hostile work environment" against women at the carmaker's factory in the United States.

Assembly line worker Erica Cloud accused defendants, including her former manager, of "continuous and pervasive" sexual harassment in a lawsuit filed in Alameda County Superior Court in California on Wednesday (Dec 8).

She alleged that the manager hugged and massaged her while making crude and suggestive remarks. She said she is now experiencing retaliation from other managers after complaining to Tesla's human resources team about the misconduct.

Tesla and other defendants subjected her to "a hostile work environment stemming from animus towards her gender" and sexual harassment, the lawsuit said.

The lawsuit alleged that Tesla and other defendants failed to prevent and take corrective actions over sexual harassment and retaliation.

The automaker, which does not have a public relations department, did not immediately responded to Reuters' e-mailed questions about the lawsuit.

On Nov 18, another female Tesla worker, Ms Jessica Barraza, filed a lawsuit against the company, alleging rampant sexual harassment at its main factory in Fremont, California.

"The pervasive culture of sexual harassment, which includes a daily barrage of sexist language and behaviour, including frequent groping on the factory floor, is known to supervisors and managers and often perpetrated by them," the lawsuit alleged.

In October, a black contract worker won a US$137 million (S$187 million) jury award over workplace racism against Tesla. Tesla shareholders subsequently approved a proposal to ask it to publish a report fully accessing the company's diversity and inclusion effort.

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