Tesla is asking a judge to delay a lawsuit filed by the California civil rights agency that accuses the company of racial discrimination and harassment at its factory in Fremont, California.
In a state court filing in Oakland, Tesla revealed that it is also being investigated by a different civil rights agency for similar allegations, accusing both agencies of waging a “turf war.” the news was first reported by Reuters.
Last February, the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) filed a lawsuit against Tesla in which he accuses the company of operating a “racially segregated” workplace.
In its court filing this week, Tesla revealed that it is also being investigated by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). The company accused the DFEH of rushing its lawsuit in an effort to preempt the investigation. of the EEOC, calling it “basic investigation,” according to Reuters.
Tesla is asking the court to stop the DFEH lawsuit until it can resolve the EEOC’s investigation. The company also accused the DFEH of violating a state law that requires it to meet certain requirements before suing an employer.
This is not the first time the DFEH and the EEOC have clashed over employee harassment claims. The state agency recently lost a bid to block the EEOC’s $18 million settlement with Activision Blizzard in a sexual harassment and gender discrimination claim. Last summer, DFEH filed a lawsuit against Activision Blizzard, alleging that the company fostered a culture of “persistent sexual harassment.”
Tesla has faced numerous accusations of racial discrimination and harassment at its Fremont plant. Last October, a jury awarded a black former Tesla employee $137 million in damages after he accused the company of ignoring racial abuse and discrimination. (A judge later reduced that award to $15 million.)