Tesla says recent firings at its Buffalo, New York factory resulted from performance reviews and not from employee unionizing efforts.
In a blog post, Tesla says employee reviews occur every six months at all of its locations worldwide. “If an employee fails to meet their performance expectations, they will be let go,” the post says. Firings for the most recent employee reviews began the week of February 12th. Employees announced their efforts to unionize on February 14th.
Roughly four percent of the employees part of the Buffalo Autopilot labelling team lost their jobs based on the most recent review process. Tesla says it identified the employees on February 3rd, more than a week before unionizing efforts were announced.
“The employees let go as part of this process received prior feedback on their poor performance from their managers over the course of the review period,” the blog post says. “Despite feedback, they did not demonstrate sufficient improvement.”
The company also addressed allegations that some employees face constant pressure that makes them feel like they can’t use the bathroom, specifically pointing to its image labelling process. Tesla said it is time monitored to improve labelling software.
“Since its purpose is to calculate how long it takes to label an image, there is nothing to be gained by delaying bathroom breaks. The claim that Tesla pressures employees to do so is categorically false.”
Image credit: Tesla