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18 February 2024

HomeLatest NewsSpaceX probed by California over sex bias, retaliation claims

SpaceX probed by California over sex bias, retaliation claims

SpaceX probed by California over sex bias, retaliation claims

SpaceX probed by California over sex bias, retaliation claims

(Reuters) SpaceX is being investigated by a California civil rights agency over allegations that the rocket and satellite maker and CEO Elon Musk have failed to address rampant discrimination and sexual harassment against female employees.

The California Civil Rights Department notified SpaceX of the claims in January, several months after a group of engineers filed complaints with the agency claiming they were fired for criticizing SpaceX and Musk in a letter to company executives, their lawyer Laurie Burgess said Tuesday.

Those same workers are the focus of a case that the U.S. National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has filed against SpaceX, accusing the company of violating federal labor law by firing them. The company has denied wrongdoing and, in turn, sued the agency seeking to block its lawsuit from moving forward, claiming that NLRB board members and in-house judges were not properly appointed under the U.S. Constitution.

Six of the California complaints were obtained by Reuters. In them, the engineers said that Hawthorne, California-based SpaceX routinely passes women over for jobs and promotions in favor of men, pays female workers less than men who do comparable work, tolerates sexual comments and other harassment, and retaliated against the engineers and other workers for complaining.

“SpaceX tolerates, condones, and permits a work environment that is hostile to female employees and to employees of all genders who object to discrimination and harassment,” the workers said in the complaints.

SpaceX did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The California agency, which is prohibited by state law from commenting on pending investigations, did not respond to a request for comment.

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