Coronavirus squeezes Americans out of jobs, making room for robots

Customer service givers, cashiers, hotel employees and even menial workers, have been slowly replaced by robots or AIs since the coronavirus caused an economic turmoil.

A robot equipped with artificial intelligence is seen at the AI Xperience Center at the VUB (Vrije Universiteit Brussel) in Brussels, Belgium February 19, 2020. (photo credit: YVES HERMAN/REUTERS)
A robot equipped with artificial intelligence is seen at the AI Xperience Center at the VUB (Vrije Universiteit Brussel) in Brussels, Belgium February 19, 2020.
(photo credit: YVES HERMAN/REUTERS)
As coronavirus took the job market by surprise and turned it on its head, many were left unemployed and their jobs may have been give to new employees who never get sick, robots, according to the TIME magazine.
Customer service workers, cashiers, hotel employees and even menial workers, have been slowly replaced by robots or AI since the coronavirus caused economic turmoil. 
The process, however, was not caused by the outbreak per se, but it was simply accelerated by it. People have been worried about losing their jobs to technology for years, but now, after so much progress has been made in the field of AI and automation the fear is becoming real for many.
Daniel Susskind an economist from the University of Oxford and the author of the book A World Without Work: Technology, Automation and How We Should Respond, said that "this pandemic has created a very strong incentive to automate the work of human begins... Machines don't fall ill, they don't need to isolate to protect peers, they don't need to take time off work." 
The potential job loss is especially true for people of color, as it is likely likely to oust many of them in the US. According to Mckinsey's estimates, the global management consulting company, the progressing trend may lead to the lay off some 132,000 black workers by 2030. 
For some workers, on the other hand, who are union members, this sudden rise of the machines, may offer a path for professional development as employers may have to offer employees who lost their position to a robot an opportunity to retrain and gain new skills. 


Tags economy robot