Washington, D.C.—As breakthroughs in artificial intelligence (AI) continue, it’s unclear whether the adoption of AI in the workplace will benefit or harm workers. A new CAP article calls on Congress and the Biden administration to center the needs of workers as they respond to the development and adoption of AI tools and systems in the workplace.
As AI developments continue at breakneck speed, Congress has an opportunity at the onset of AI’s power to shape the ways in which AI will affect workers, both through action and inaction. A multifaceted, worker-centric approach will be crucial to supporting all workers, including women, Black and Latino workers who are more likely to be impacted by AI. In fact, 79 percent of women are employed in roles that could be affected compared to just 58 percent of men. This paired with the vast underrepresentation of women, Black, and Latino workers in STEM education and its workforce could worsen occupation segregation and prevent these workers from accessing jobs that complement or are created by AI.
This article examines how advanced AI has the capacity to change work and offers three policy responses Congress and the Biden administration should take to ensure there is a multi-faceted, worker-centered approach when it comes to AI. This approach should include three core components including:
- Steering the creation of AI to complement workers: Implement stronger worker protections to bolster job security and quality
- Preparing workers for the adoption of AI: Invest in preparing workers for the adoption of AI by upskilling, reskilling, and retraining workers, including active labor market policies such as paid educational leave and labor management training programs.
- Meeting the needs of displaced workers: Updating the social safety net to support workers displaced from AI and unable to find work, and adopting a job guarantee.
“The adoption of AI has the capacity to change where and how we work, and with the right tools and policy intervention, Congress and the Biden administration can ensure that AI supports and complements workers. To do so, we must take a worker-centric approach that prioritizes workers’ needs and helps workers share in the gains from AI. It’ll be up to Congress and the Biden administration to ensure adopters of AI are using its power to support workers, not displace them,” said Rose Khattar, director of economic analysis and author of the column.
Read the article: “Will AI benefit or harm workers?” by Rose Khattar
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