Tesla Dismisses California DFEH Lawsuit as ‘Misguided’

The California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) is planning to file a lawsuit against Tesla, claiming the automaker has an issue with systematic racial discrimination and harassment, according to a post on Tesla’s website.

The page, which features the header “The DFEH’s Misguided Lawsuit,” details the three-year DFEH investigation into Tesla’s workplace practices, in which the automaker says the agency “has never once raised any concern about current workplace practices.”

The suit, Tesla points out, focuses on alleged misconduct from the company’s production associates at its Fremont factory from 2015 to 2019.

In the report, Tesla said, “Over the past five years, the DFEH has been asked on almost 50 occasions by individuals who believe they were discriminated against or harassed to investigate Tesla. On every single occasion, once concluded the DFEH has closed its investigation without a finding of misconduct against Tesla.”

Tesla continued, “It therefore strains credibility for the agency to now allege, after a three-year investigation, that systematic racial discrimination and harassment somehow existed at Tesla. A narrative spun by the DFEH and a handful of plaintiff firms to generate publicity is not factual proof.”

After the suit is filed, Tesla says it plans to ask the court to pause the case to “ensure that facts and evidence will be heard.”

Tesla also faces a sexual harassment lawsuit from a former employee who detailed “nightmarish” conditions at the Fremont factory.

Last year, Tesla also faced a $137 million settlement on a racial discrimination case with a former contract worker from the Fremont facility, before asking the judge to reduce the amount awarded.