Elon Musk says Tesla, SpaceX will honor Juneteenth as a US holiday

Musk's statement comes after Tesla workers planned a protest and demanded a statement from the CEO.

Sean Szymkowski
It all started with Gran Turismo. From those early PlayStation days, Sean was drawn to anything with four wheels. Prior to joining the Roadshow team, he was a freelance contributor for Motor Authority, The Car Connection and Green Car Reports. As for what's in the garage, Sean owns a 2016 Chevrolet SS, and yes, it has Holden badges.
Sean Szymkowski
2 min read
Enlarge Image

Musk has finally spoken out.

Saul Martinez/Getty Images

Amid pressure from workers, and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk said both the companies he heads will honor Juneteenth as if it were an official US holiday.

Musk tweeted Friday around 10:00 a.m. PT that the date celebrating the end of slavery in the US is "henceforth considered a US holiday" at both companies. In a follow-up tweet, Musk clarified that this will "require the use of a paid-time-off day," like with other holidays at the company.

An email surfaced via Twitter earlier this morning from Valerie Workman, Tesla's head of human resources in the US, declaring Tesla workers could take Juneteenth off as an excused absence without pay. However, according to the tweet, the email arrived after some workers at Tesla's plant in Fremont, California had already arrived for work.

The automaker did not immediately respond to Roadshow's request for comment on Musk's remarks.

Global scenes of Black Lives Matter protests show outrage far beyond US

See all photos

Workers at the plant had already planned a protest to highlight Juneteenth's importance and explicitly called for a statement from Musk. We'll need to wait and see if the CEO has anything additional to share following his tweet.

Workman has, however, penned an open letter speaking to the realities of being Black in the US. In it, she writes, "Fearing for the lives of my husband and sons is a constant nagging undercurrent that I suppress so that I can go about my day (just as my mother, my grandmother and my great-grandmother learned to live with this fact of life)."

She continued, "Despite being a proponent of bringing your whole self to work, I never discuss this part of my life in the office."

Watch this: Elon Musk and Tesla vs. California's quarantine