Tesla is perhaps most well-known among Wisconsin car and environmental enthusiasts for its work on electric vehicles. Unfortunately, former employees claim that the company relied on paranoia and intimidation to keep employees quiet about various workplace violations. Multiple people have come forward despite CEO Elon Musk’s insistence that the whistleblowing painted an inaccurate picture of his company.

The first worker to speak up about the problems at Tesla initially gave information to a business magazine regarding hazardous conditions at a factory and uncontrollable waste of raw materials. Additional safety concerns included punctured battery cells. He said that he tried to get his superiors to take his concerns seriously, but when they ignored the problems he went to the press. He was subsequently fired after a six-hour interview with company investigators.

In response to the former employee’s claims, Musk accused the man of hacking into the computer systems at Tesla in order to sabotage the entire company. However, other employees have come forward since then to either corroborate the whistleblower’s story or to make complaints of their own. Among these individuals is a former security manager who witnessed the retaliation against the first whistleblower.

Tesla is facing multiple lawsuits for whistleblowing retaliation. Although this is not always the case, many large companies tend to feel that they can thrive on a culture of fear and intimidation. When brave Wisconsin workers blow the whistle on their employers’ bad behaviors they often face swift retaliation. To combat the economic impact of such actions, many victims choose to pursue compensation from their former employers.