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A quarter of Brits fear they will lose their job to robot workers

ALMOST A QUARTER OF BRITS fear that robots will end up taking their jobs, as analysts claim that employers could turn to machines as a way of plugging the holes left by lack of EU migrant labour following Brexit. 

That’s according to research published to coincide with the launch of a new Commission on Workers and Technology, backed by the Fabian Society and headed by MP Yvette Cooper, which finds that 23 per cent of British workers, or six million people, are worried that their current job may no longer be needed.

According to analysts, not only could robots potentially replace migrant workers, but they could also put 250,000 public workers of work by 2030.  

The new research, based on a YouGov survey of 1,000 workers, also reveals that found more than 37 per cent of respondents – equivalent to 10 million workers – are worried their job will change for the worse over the next decade thanks to the rise of automation.

It’s not all doom and gloom, though. 73 per cent said they are confident they will be able to change and update their skills if new technology affects their job, while 53 per cent said they were optimistic about their future working life and job prospects.

Still, few workers think the government, employers or trade unions were making adequate preparations for the arrival of new workplace technologies.

Just nine per cent said the 9 per cent think that UK gov is taking steps to prepare them for new workplace technologies; 16 per cent of that their trade unions are taking appropriate steps; and only 27 per cent of employees think their employer is taking action to prepare them for changes.

In a bid to appease these fears, the newly-launched Commission has pledged to address how to ensure technology change leads to good jobs, not bad ones; how to support workers to adapt and re-skill; and how government, employers and trade unions can work positively together on this agenda.

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.” µ

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Source : Inquirer

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