Elon Musk has announced that Twitter will begin laying off employees on Friday morning. In a memo to employees, several Twitter employees filed a class-action lawsuit alleging the layoffs violated labor laws.
The email he sent on Thursday evening informed employees that they would receive a notice informing them of their work status by 12pm on Friday.
“If your work is not affected, you will be notified by your Twitter email,” he said in a copy of the email obtained by CNN. “If your work is affected, you will receive a notification via your personal email with next steps.”
The company’s offices will be “temporarily closed and all badge access will be suspended” to ensure the security of employees and Twitter systems, the email added.
He concluded by admitting that the email would be an “incredibly challenging experience for staff to go through”.
The memo comes after news reports last week that he plans to lay off up to half of the company’s workforce after buying it for $44 billion.
The class action lawsuit filed Thursday alleges that Twitter violated the federal Workers’ Compensation and Retraining Notification Act (WARN Act) after it laid off some employees.
The WARN Act requires an employer with more than 100 employees to provide 60 days’ advanced written notice “before affecting 50 or more employees in a single workplace.”
“Elon Musk, the richest man in the world, has made it clear that he believes it is easy to comply with federal labor laws,” said Shannon Lees-Riordan, the attorney who filed the lawsuit. “We are filing this federal complaint to hold Twitter accountable to our laws and to prevent Twitter employees from inadvertently signing away their rights.”
Before Musk took over, Twitter had about 7,500 employees.
Musk began his tenure at Twitter by firing CEO Parag Agrawal and two other executives, two people familiar with the decision said.
And less than a week after Musk took over the company, the C-suite appears to have been purged almost entirely, with a mix of firings and resignations. Musk has disbanded Twitter’s former board of directors.
— Clare Duffy and Sean Nottingham contributed to this report