Swedish Unions Escalate Tesla Dispute to Impact Supercharger Stations

The labour dispute between Tesla and unions in Sweden and other Nordic countries has escalated once more, with the standoff now extending to impact Supercharger stations.

This nearly four-month-long battle began when Tesla refused to sign a collective wage agreement, prompting a strike that initially involved mechanics at 10 Tesla repair shops in seven cities across the country. The strike, spearheaded by the metal workers’ union IF Metall, has since garnered support from nearly a dozen other unions, including those representing postal workers, dock workers, and even extending to neighbouring Nordic countries.

Now, the Swedish Union for Service and Communications Employees (Seko) has joined the cause, announcing this week they will no longer maintain or install Supercharger stations in solidarity with the striking workers.

The fight that IF Metall is now taking is important for the entire Swedish collective agreement model. That is why we have chosen to issue another sympathy notice and increase the pressure on Tesla.

Seko president Gabriella Lavecchia (via Reuters)

The job action will begin March 4, 2024, unless of course Tesla agrees to sign a collective wage agreement before then, which at this point seems highly unlikely to happen.

Despite Tesla’s global workforce of 127,000, CEO Elon Musk has consistently resisted unionization efforts. This resistance has led to a challenging situation for IF Metall, which has reported difficulties in mobilizing mechanics to join the strike.

The targeting of Tesla Superchargers by Seko will affect not only Tesla owners but also other electric vehicle (EV) drivers in Sweden, as Tesla’s charging network is open to non-Tesla EVs.

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