The automaker, Tesla has been criticised by politicians and the German union IG Metall for what they claim to be unfair work schedules and lack of freedom of speech at their Brandenburg plant.
At its annual press conference, IG Metall, which claims to regularly communicate with workers and have an office close to the plant, noted that an increasing number of them were complaining about longer workdays and limited leisure time.
The non-disclosure agreements that employees were required to sign along with their employment contracts also caused them to feel increasingly hesitant about expressing their working circumstances in public, according to IG Metall.
These worries were exacerbated by a new position posted on Tesla's career website for a "Security Intelligence Investigator," who would work with the legal and human resources departments to gather "on-the-ground information both inside and outside Tesla walls to protect the company from threats.
"Workers started at Tesla with great enthusiasm for the project. Over time we are observing that this enthusiasm is withering," Irene Schulz of IG Metall Berlin-Brandenburg-Sachsen said in a statement.
"Tesla is not doing enough to improve working conditions and is leaving too little time for leisure, family and recovery."
Tesla did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
According to two persons with knowledge of the situation, Tesla China has also requested that a small number of employees sign non-disclosure agreements. Reuters discovered multiple individuals working for Tesla in Austin, San Francisco, and Shanghai with the title "Security Intelligence Investigator" on LinkedIn.
According to a Monday article in the German business journal Handelsblatt, local politicians from the centre-left SPD to the centre-right CDU expressed worry about the claims and demanded investigations from both Tesla and the local government.
Christian Baeumler of the Christian Democrats (CDU) told Handelsblatt that the state of Brandenburg needed to strictly regulate workplace safety at Tesla.
The government of Brandenburg was unavailable for comment right away.
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