Michigan lawmakers announce bill to help workers who lose their jobs due to automation

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WASHINGTON, DC –

Michigan senators Gary Peters and Debbie Stabenow introduced legislation to support workers who lose their jobs due to automation today.

The senators joined Kirsten Gillibrand (NY), and Catherine Cortez Masto (NV) in introducing The TAA for Automation Act, which would expand access to Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) benefits, such as job training and reemployment services.

Under the current TAA program, workers who have lost their jobs due to trade are supported. But those who have lost their jobs due to technological changes and automation do not receive the same benefits or support.

According to a Brookings Institute report released earlier this year, approximately 25% percent of all American jobs will experience high levels of risk to automation in the coming decades.

“This legislation would help strengthen our economy by supporting workers displaced through no fault of their own and assisting them with developing the skillsets our businesses need to fill good-paying jobs across Michigan,” Senator Peters, a member of the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee said.

The legislation would also establish a workforce advisory board to provide recommendations to Department of Labor, Congress and the public on addressing the impact of automation on the workforce, including matters related to jobs and occupations at-risk of elimination. The bill has also been endorsed by the UAW and the AFL-CIO.

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