Tesla’s Return to Work Playbook: Guidance in the Face of Law Violation

Despite reports of Tesla CEO Elon Musk disobeying government orders to reopen his car factories, the famous vehicle manufacturer has released a Return to Work Playbook.

Elon Musk, CEO of famous vehicle manufacturer Tesla, has gotten some media coverage as of late, and not necessarily for supportive reasons. Musk has reopened a Tesla factory despite local laws and regulations. Nonetheless, Tesla has published its own Return to Work Playbook.

The Playbook outlines how the company will safely and carefully reopen in response to the coronavirus pandemic. It cites larger health organizations and their recommendations, including the CDC and EHS.

It claims that “Tesla strives to provide each employee with a safe and healthy work environment.” However, many are not sure the factory’s reopening is truly in the best interest of its employees’ health—especially given that it disobeys federal guidelines.

The Playbook lists the following steps it is taking to ensure the safety of its employees:

  • increased cleaning at the site
  • providing disinfectant and sanitizer wherever possible
  • enforcing social distancing
  • enforcing temperature checks or other symptoms screening
  • adjusting work shifts
  • implementing company-wide procedures for suspected or confirmed COVID-19 cases
  • reduced shuttle occupancy to 50 percent of lower
  • providing PPE to workers
  • implemented “touchless” surfaces
  • suspended visitors and tours in most locations

It includes a readiness checklist and other COVID-response tips for the facilities. Still, it asks employees to take responsibility for their own risks, including reporting symptoms and minimizing close contact with others.

With as many as 50 percent of those with the virus suspected of being asymptomatic, some worry these measures just won’t cut it, and that it’s too early to reopen.

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    September 2020

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