Sat. Jun 25th, 2022

Tesla racism case: Former worker rejects $15 million award

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A Black former Tesla worker, who said he was the victim of racial abuse, rejected a $15 million award after the amount was drastically reduced by a judge.

Owen Diaz, who worked as an elevator operator at Tesla’s plant in Fremont, California, said he was faced with “daily racist epithets,” including the “N-word.” 

Tesla Factory

A view of Tesla Inc’s U.S. vehicle factory in Fremont, California. (REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton / Reuters Photos)

He was originally awarded $6.9 million in damages for emotional distress and $130 million in punitive damages in the case.

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A judge slashed that by nearly 90% to $15 million.

Diaz’s rejection of the award could mean a new trial in the case.

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Tesla Logo

The Tesla logo is seen on a car in Los Angeles, California. (REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson / Reuters Photos)

Diaz had alleged that employees drew swastikas and left racist graffiti and drawings around the plant and that supervisors failed to stop the abuse.

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A representative for Tesla could not immediately be reached for comment Wednesday night.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.



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