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[Slashdot] - Some Tesla Workers Still Concerned at Partially-Reopened Plant

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"We have met with Tesla representatives and have confirmed that Tesla is not engaged in full operations, contrary to media reports" this week, read an announcement Wednesday from Alameda County's office of emergency services in its health care services agency. ("Tesla has confirmed that its operations require a substantial lead time to become fully operational, and their current operations are only slightly above Minimum Business Operations.") But some Tesla workers are still concerned, reports CNN: "I don't feel Elon has those Tesla workers' best interest in his heart. That's my opinion," said Branton Phillips, a material handler for Tesla's production control in the Freemont factory. Tesla did not immediately respond to a request for comment... To keep factory workers safe, Tesla said it will take employees' temperatures, reduce the number of people working particular shifts, distribute protective equipment, regularly clean the factory and enforce social distancing. Phillips said he's concerned the company's safety protocols will be insufficient. "This is going to be a monumental undertaking," the material handler said. "And I'm sure they're trying their best. It's just not going to be completely possible to completely social distance. That is just going to be a fact." Phillips believes that many other employees share his concerns. However, Phillips plans to return to work Monday when the factory reopens. He said he needs to make a living. "Just wanted to send you a note of appreciation for working hard to make Tesla successful," Musk said in an email to employees. "It is so cool seeing the factory come back to life and you are making it happen!!" Business Insider quotes him as saying. "Workers who spoke to Business Insider's Linette Lopez and Mark Matousek ahead of Tesla re-opening the Fremont factory said they feared for their jobs if they didn't report for work." One employee said they were told by the company they wouldn't receive benefits if they didn't come back to work, and would be unable to apply for unemployment. Another said they were told their furlough status would change. "Many of the workers are older men with pre-existing health conditions," points out an announcement from the county's office of emergency services in its health care services agency, "and many are African American and Latinx... these groups are at higher risk in terms of impact/deaths..."

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