Gwynne Shotwell, President of SpaceX in an email sent to employees has responded to sexual misconduct allegations directed at CEO Elon Musk.
Shotwell said she believes the allegation to be false and has never heard anything like the allegations thrown at Musk in her 20 years of knowing the billionaire.
This came after the CEO Elon Musk publicly denied the same allegations made against him, describing the allegations as “utterly untrue” in a tweet.
- An allegation contained in an article published by Business Insider claims SpaceX paid a settlement fee of $250k to cover up sexual harassment allegations by a flight attendant of SpaceX against CEO, Elon Musk in 2018.
- Business Insider also claimed the deal required that the flight attendant did not sue or disclose any information about Elon Musk and his businesses.
- The news site said it was referencing documents, email correspondence, interviews, and a declaration signed by the friend of the attendant in support of the claims.
- Musk has however denied the claims and tweeted “I have a challenge to this liar who claims their friend saw me ‘exposed’ – describe just one thing, anything at all (scars, tattoos, …) that isn’t known by the public. She won’t be able to do so, because it never happened.”
What SpaceX President is saying
According to CNBC part of the mail read “Personally, I believe the allegations to be false; not because I work for Elon, but because I have worked closely with him for 20 years and never seen nor heard anything resembling these allegations,”
The SpaceX president stated in the email that she “will never comment on any legal matters involving employment issues”.
She also noted in the email that SpaceX has a “ZERO tolerance” policy for harassment, adding that every accusation is taken seriously and investigated, “regardless of who is involved.
What you should know
- This is not the first time the company is facing sexual harassment-related complaints. In December 2021, Ashley Kosak, a former employee of SpaceX, alleged in an essay that the company is “rife with sexism” and that its human resources team does not protect victims of harassment or abuse.
- In addition, the timing of the allegations might prove to not be favourable to the company as SpaceX looks to raise $1.7 billion in new funding, According to a report by CNBC made last week Sunday, the round values SpaceX at about $127 billion, making it the most valuable private company in the U.S.