Despite a statewide shelter in place directive, Tesla has asked its employees to show up for work, stating that the company has received “conflicting guidance from different levels of government” about whether it should keep production open or not. This, after the Alameda County sheriff’s office termed Tesla a “non essential” business yesterday and asked it to only keep production at bare minimum.

The Fremont facility, which employs around 10,000 people from different backgrounds, will be open and operational. The company’s HR, in a company wide email (via TechCrunch), has asked for employees from production, servicing, delivery and testing to still show up for work, despite a shelter in place order from the county sheriff office. The Sheriff’s office has asked all non essential businesses, like gyms, bars, restaurants etc, to stop operations, in an effort to preclude the spread of coronavirus.

The email read,

We still do not have final word from the city, county, state and federal government on the status of our operations. We have had conflicting guidance from different levels of government.

Until then, we are operating with essential employees only while all others are working from home and working to incorporate all CDC guidelines into our operations.

There are no changes in your normal assignment and you should continue to report to work if you are in an essential function: production, service, deliveries, testing and supporting groups as discussed with your manager. If you are not assigned to support an essential function, your manager might suggest a temporary relocation to support essential functions, or you may need to be on call.

If you are not feeling well, please stay at home and use PTO. If your PTO balance is low, you can borrow up to 80 hours (2 weeks) after you exhaust your PTO balance. Please inform your manager and follow the normal procedures for sick time.

Therefore, it is clear that Tesla is still keeping its shutters open. Moreover, the company is allowing employees to borrow PTO, which means that those who decide to take a leave will be fined for it in the future.

According to an employee, Tesla has provided the provision of unpaid leaves to those who are feeling sick. The email told the employee that they would be not be penalized for their decision or face disciplinary action for attendance based on health or impossibility to come to work.

Tesla’s decision is pretty much in line with the company’s business plans for the year, which included a possible 36% growth in deliveries over the previous year. After its Shanghai plant being shut down, Fremont is Tesla’s only hope for a profitable quarter.

Who cares about the 9,400+ cases of COVID-19 in the US after all?

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