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Twitter's sole owner and Tesla CEO Elon Musk has now found himself in legal troubled waters after former employees who were laid-off from Twitter have alleged that Musk's overhaul that saw almost 7,500 global employees leave had been in violation of multiple labour rights.

The laid-off employees held a press conference to inform about the labour right violations. “Real people were affected by this, I have a family, I have kids to support," former Twitter engineer Wren Turkal was quoted by CNN during a press conference in San Francisco. “All that we’re looking for is fairness."

CNN quoted another former Twitter engineer, Emmanuel Cornet, “It seems like the layoffs have been done in a way that’s really clumsy and inhumane and potentially illegal … and this is the aftermath."

Former Twitter employee Wren Turkal, foreground, speaks during a news conference outside of a federal courthouse in San Francisco, Thursday, Dec. 8, 2022. Turkal is one of the former Twitter employees suing the company in federal court after losing their jobs when billionaire Elon Musk took over
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Former Twitter employee Wren Turkal, foreground, speaks during a news conference outside of a federal courthouse in San Francisco, Thursday, Dec. 8, 2022. Turkal is one of the former Twitter employees suing the company in federal court after losing their jobs when billionaire Elon Musk took over (AP)

News reports emerged that showed that Elon Musk has allegedly converted the offices of Twitter into bedrooms, insinuating the image of a tough taskmaster asking his employees to sleep on site. This earned Elon Musk a complaint in the city of San Francisco claiming that the bedrooms in office are illegal.

"It's very concerning that the richest man in the world thinks that he can walk all over employee rights and doesn't have to follow the law. We intend to hold him accountable," AFP quoted lawyer Shannon Liss-Riordan.

Allegations against Elon Musk include no payment of severance pay and compensation of laid-off employees. Employees have alleged that the payments had been promised to them before Elon Musk's takeover are not being paid to them.

Elon Musk is facing four class action lawsuits.

These include

- Twitter renegading on promises to allow remote work

-Consistent severance benefits after the Musk acquisition

-Complaints related to alleged disability and gender-based discrimination

-Suit on behalf of Twitter contractors who were laid off

Former Twitter employee Dmitry Borodaenko, left, shakes hands with Gabriel Mirandam a former janitor at Twitter, during a news conference outside of a federal courthouse in San Francisco, Thursday, Dec. 8, 2022. Borodaenko is one of the former Twitter employees suing the company in federal court after losing their jobs when billionaire Elon Musk took over
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Former Twitter employee Dmitry Borodaenko, left, shakes hands with Gabriel Mirandam a former janitor at Twitter, during a news conference outside of a federal courthouse in San Francisco, Thursday, Dec. 8, 2022. Borodaenko is one of the former Twitter employees suing the company in federal court after losing their jobs when billionaire Elon Musk took over (AP)

Notably, the assurances, which included bonuses and stock options, were made to keep employees at Twitter, guaranteeing an exit package as the arrival of the mercurial Musk loomed.

Apart from this, Elon Musk is also facing a case for his ultimatum to his employees warning them to either sign up to his vision for the company and embrace a "hardcore" work ethic, or take three months of their salary and quit.

Lawyers have argued that this action was a lay-off plan in disguise. They have alleged that Elon Musk's deeds ignored California law by denying workers the compensation and 60-day warning time required by law.

Musk's disdain for working from home is also being resisted, with employees with disabilities or health concerns seeing orders to come back to the office as discriminatory.

How this could effect Elon Musk and Twitter?

Experts have mentioned that this continual class action lawsuits could cost Twitter dearly, especially as the social media company is in financial distress after Elon Musk $44 billion takeover.

Twitter "could quickly resolve the matter by paying the ex-employees whatever they are entitled to under the law," said Eric Goldman, a law professor at Santa Clara University.

"Or it could play hardball and make them work for it, which could take years," he said.

Elon Musk's take on lawsuits

According to several reports, Twitter which fired their entire communication department during the massive Twitter Layoff has not replied to any official queries.

Twitter owner Elon Musk has said, "So city of San Francisco attacks companies providing beds for tired employees instead of making sure kids are safe from fentanyl," Musk said in a tweet, lashing out at Mayor London Breed.

Musk was referring to a recent scandal of a 10-month-old boy who overdosed on fentanyl after ingesting the substance at a playground.

 

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