SpaceX employees have written an open letter denouncing the behavior of the company’s CEO Elon Musk, following recently published allegations of sexual misconduct against him.
“Elon’s behavior in the public sphere has been a frequent source of distraction and embarrassment to us, especially in recent weeks,” the letter, obtained by The New York Times, reads. “As our CEO and most prominent spokesperson, Elon is seen as the face of SpaceX – every tweet Elon sends is a de facto public statement from the company.”
The letter comes amid the billionaire’s controversial takeover of Twitter for $44 billion. On Thursday, Mr. Musk addressed Twitter employees for the first time via video call to explain his vision for the company after he closes the deal, which he has expressed some reservations about.
A SpaceX spokesperson did not respond to a request for comment on the letter. The edge listed first on the document.
In May, Insider reported that a flight attendant said that Mr. Musk proposed to her for a sexual massage during a flight to London in 2016. The flight attendant said he also exposed himself to her and offered her a horse, according to the article, details of which had not been independently verified. by The New York Times.
Following that report, Mr. Musk called the story “completely false‘ and joked on Twitter about horses and his genitals. Last month, Gwynne Shotwell, SpaceX’s president and chief operating officer, wrote an email to employees saying she “personally” believed the sexual harassment allegations against Mr. Musk were false.
“Anyone who knows Elon like me knows that he would never perform or condone this alleged inappropriate behavior,” she wrote in the email.
It’s unclear how many people signed the open letter to SpaceX. The letter outlines several demands, including public condemnation of “Elon’s harmful Twitter behavior” and establishing clear definitions of all forms of unacceptable behavior by the rocket maker.
“It is critical to make clear to our teams and our potential talent pool that his messages do not reflect our work, our mission or our values,” the letter reads.
“SpaceX needs to quickly and explicitly separate itself from Elon’s personal brand,” it continued.