Musk strips United Auto Workers (UAW) of blue check

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Tesla CEO Elon Musk stripped the United Auto Workers (UAW) of its blue check on X (formerly Twitter), hours after union workers at Ford, General Motors, and Stellantis went on strike. The move came as the UAW was using Twitter to amplify strikers’ demands and build support for the strike.

Musk has a history of union-busting and has been openly critical of the UAW. In 2018, he threatened Tesla workers who were attempting to unionize, saying that they would lose their stock options if they did so. He also lost a court battle earlier this year over a tweet in which he threatened to close a Tesla factory if workers unionized.

It is unclear why Musk removed the UAW’s blue check, but some have speculated that it was an attempt to silence the union during a critical time. The UAW has said that it paid for Twitter verification and that its account was marked as verified until Musk removed it without any notification.

Musk’s removal of the UAW’s blue check comes at a time when Tesla is facing its own labor challenges. Workers at the company’s Buffalo-based Autopilot plant have been trying to unionize, alleging that they are being treated “like robots” and pressured to skip bathroom breaks. In April, the NLRB ruled that Tesla violated labor laws when managers at an Orlando repair shop illegally silenced workers attempting to discuss pay and working conditions.

The sources for this piece include an article in ArsTechnica.

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