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Report Claims Over 6 Billion UK Workers Concerns Of Job Loss Due To Automation

Report Claims Over 6 Billion UK Workers Concerns Of Job Loss Due To Automation
Fears that machines could take over their jobs in the next decade or so have been expressed by over six million workers in the United Kingdom according to a report which also called on the government to and trade unions to create strategies for supporting such people whose jobs would be at risk.
In recent days, a commission on workers and technology for the Fabian Society and the Community trade union is being launched by Yvette Cooper, the Labour chair of the Commons home affairs select committee.
Methods to support workers through the transition when machines take over part of human is to be investigated by the commission which has representatives from businesses, trade unions and academics even though the gap between the rich and the poor would be widened in the UK and there could be risk of social disruptions because of the rise of the machine economy. There are some companies that are already replacing human jobs by automation. One example of this is Shop Direct which issued warnings of job loss for about 2000 of its employees when it moves to its new distribution centre.
About 15 million jobs throughout the UK can be at risk, the Bank of England has warned earlier. On the other hand, compared to people working in London and the south-east of England, those employed in Mansfield, Sunderland and Wakefield are more at risk to loose their jobs to machines have been issued by the Centre for Cities thinktank.
Over 37 per cent of 1000 respondents – which is equal to 10 million employees – are concerned about change for the worse in their job over the next decade, found the commission in a survey. The commission is to be chaired by Cooper and has a shelf life of two years. The report also noted that very few of the respondents believed that anything of substance was being done to prepare for machines taking over the workplace by the government or trade unions.
There have also been some other studies that have investigated the impact of increased use of technology in the economy. According to a research report by IPPPR thinktank, over the next few decades more than 44 per cent of jobs would potentially be automated which translates into over 13.7 million people with combined earnings of about £290 billion. According to economists, the most at risk would be those from the lower-income class and those engaged in manual jobs which means that there would be erosion of the middle class and greater pressure on the government because of rise in unemployment.
Evidence from workplaces throughout the country over the next two years would be collected by the Fabian Society and Community commission and the report would likely be published in early 2020.
Yvette Cooper said: “It’s vital that action is taken now to make sure technology creates new better jobs and that all workers benefit from new technology.
“We have to make sure that automation and the digital revolution don’t widen inequality and that everyone gets the help and support they need to get on … We need to ensure that automation is an opportunity and not a threat for British workers.”

Christopher J. Mitchell

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