Published in Transportation

Swedes rebel against Tesla

by on20 November 2023

Unfair to workers

Swedish workers are uniting against Tesla and its 19th-century attitudes to trade unions.

Cleaners have stopped cleaning Tesla showrooms, electricians won't fix the company's charging points, and dockworkers will refuse to unload Tesla cargo at all Swedish ports.

It all started as a strike by Tesla mechanics but it is spreading as the Swedes have had enough of Tesla’s moves to make worker’s life as bad as America.

The unions say make the country's labour market fair and efficient and it looks like Tesla is facing its biggest challenge.

Sweden doesn't have laws that set working conditions, such as a minimum wage – it has not needed them because the rules are dictated by collective agreements, a type of contract that defines the benefits employees are entitled to, such as wages and working hours.

However, for five years, the industrial workers' union IF Metall, which represents Tesla mechanics, has been trying to persuade the company to sign a collective agreement. When Tesla refused, the mechanics decided to strike at the end of October. Then they asked fellow Swedish unions to join them.

Some unions that joined the blockade are expanding their actions in an effort to be more effective.

Since 7 November,  union members working at four Swedish ports have been refusing to unload Tesla cargo.  Tomorrow, the blockade will be extended to all ports in Sweden.

Dockworkers say they are going to allow every other car into the country but Tesla cars will stay on the ship.

The Swedish Building Maintenance Workers' Union have joined the Tesla blockade because the [IF] Metall Workers Trade Union asked us to.

The move will affect 50 members who clean Tesla locations. Four showrooms and service centres will be affected -- three around Stockholm and one in the city of Umea.

"Their workshops and showrooms will not be cleaned."

Today the Seko union, which represents postal workers, will stop delivering letters, spare parts, and pallets to all of Tesla's addresses in Sweden.

"Tesla is trying to gain competitive advantages by giving the workers worse wages and conditions than they would have with a collective agreement," said Seko's union president, Gabriella Lavecchia, in a statement. "It is of course completely unacceptable."

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