Tesla has failed in its motion for arbitration in a sexual harassment lawsuit filed by former employee Jessica Barazar, which means the case will now go to court.
Judge Stephen Cowes of Alameda County Superior Court made the decision on Monday. He said Tesla did not give him any indication that he would “agree to arbitrate job claims and relinquish the right to a jury trial” when he was offered a factory job.
Baraja filed a lawsuit against Tesla in November 2021. He claims that the electric car maker created an environment of sexual harassment and that colleagues referred to him as a “coke bottle figure” and an “onion booty”, alleging that he had experienced “nightmares” on the factory floor. In one case, he alleged that a male colleague picked him up and held him by his side while pressing his chest.
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“Originally, Barraja was ambushed,” Judge Kaus said. “He went through extensive pre-employment activities, was offered a job, signed multiple forms and left his previous job for dependency. [a job] Offer, Tesla without giving any indication that he must agree to arbitrate job claims and relinquish the right to a jury trial. “
A few months after Barbara sued Tesla, six more women filed lawsuits against the carmaker alleging sexual harassment. Tesla often leans on arbitration in lawsuits against it and to ensure that workplace disputes are settled by private arbitrators and do not become public knowledge. The Washington Post Report
“This is a victory for public accountability,” said David A., partner of Rudy Axelrod Giff & Lowe. Lo, who is representing Barazar 6 “Because of this ruling, Tesla will not be able to hide behind closed doors of confidential arbitration. Instead, Tesla will be judged by a jury of colleagues in a public courtroom.