The New Era of Artificial Intelligence

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By Joseph Smith

Americans are experiencing the greatest technological transformation of the modern era. Automation and artificial intelligence (AI) are changing how we live, work and communicate.
But the future of this technology feels uncertain. Working people are concerned that this technology will make our jobs worse, make us earn less and maybe even cost us our jobs.
We’ve seen Hollywood studios threatening to replace writers with AI scripts and actors with digital avatars. We’ve seen warehouse workers denied bathroom breaks because an algorithm said it would hurt productivity. We’ve seen more gig work, less equity and fewer benefits.
We need guardrails that put workers—not corporate profits—at the center. That’s why we’re pleased the White House has released a pioneering executive order on AI that reaffirms the Biden–Harris administration’s commitment to America’s workers.
There is still a long road ahead to ensure federal policy around AI prioritizes workers, but this week’s executive order offers a big step in the right direction. The Executive Order on Safe, Secure and Trustworthy Artificial Intelligence commits to three important principles that champion the interests of working families:Worker Rights: Reaffirms workers’ safety and fundamental rights, including the right to organize.Worker Voice: Insists workers need a seat at the table in AI development and new industries created by AI.Worker Training: Underscores the need for accessible and comprehensive workforce training so workers can fully participate in and benefit from our changing economy.Learn more about what’s at stake for workers and our families in this technological revolution.
Labor unions are a powerful way to give workers a seat at the table and collaborate with employers on the ways they use technology, including AI.
That’s why the AFL-CIO launched our Technology Institute in 2021: to serve as the labor movement’s think tank and build a broad-based coalition to secure the accountable use of technology in the workplace and across our economy. Our institute goes head to head with the Big Tech titans, corporate CEOs and their lobbyists every day to make sure AI works for workers.
Now more than ever, working people need the collective power of unions. We are sending a message loud and clear: We want to be full partners in this transformation to make jobs safer, better and more efficient.
In Solidarity,
Text WORK to AFLCIO (235246) to join our text action team. (Message and data rates may apply.)
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