CDMX.- SpaceX fired at least five employees after discovering they had written and distributed a letter criticizing founder Elon Musk and urging executives to make the company culture more inclusive, two people familiar with the matter said.
The New York Times reported Thursday that SpaceX had fired employees related to the letter, citing three sources. It had not detailed the number of people who had been laid off.
SpaceX President Gwynne Shotwell sent an email saying the company had investigated and “terminated several employees related” to the letter, the New York Times said.
The newspaper claimed that Shotwell’s email said that the people involved in the letter’s release had been fired for making other employees feel “uncomfortable, intimidated and harassed, and/or angry that the letter pressured them to sign something they It didn’t reflect their opinions.”
Reuters could not independently confirm the report.
Musk is running a $44 billion bid for Twitter. On Thursday, he told the platform’s employees that “pretty outrageous stuff” should be allowed as long as the content isn’t illegal.
The SpaceX letter, titled “an open letter to SpaceX executives” seen by Reuters, called Musk a “distraction and embarrassment” to the company he founded.
In a list of three demands, it said “SpaceX must quickly and explicitly separate itself from Elon’s personal brand,” “hold all leaders equally accountable for making SpaceX a great place to work for everyone,” and “define and respond to uniformly to all forms of unacceptable behavior.
Musk, also the company’s chief engineer, has been considered a central figure in many of SpaceX’s high-profile successes, such as pioneering the reuse of orbital booster rockets and bringing back routine human spaceflight from US soil. after a nine-year hiatus.
Shotwell, who runs much of the company’s day-to-day business, has said he will enforce SpaceX’s “zero tolerance” rules against employee harassment.