New York City recently implemented a set of AI hiring laws, as mentioned in the first installment of my AI in the Workplace Series, and additional developments are cropping up by the week.
Most recently, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has received its first case of an employer being accused of the alleged biased use of AI screening tools, while the world of AI auditing continues to develop. As these concerns turn into legalities, it’s all the more important for employers to stay in the AI loop and remain compliant with recent regulations.
Get the latest update on AI hiring practices and regulations, before reading through my predictions for AI and the employment law mediation landscape.
EEOC’s First Case of Biased AI Hiring Practices
New York City led the charge with its Automated Employment Decision Tool Law, which now mandates regular audits for AI hiring tools to detect potential bias. As those requirements took effect this year, employers are now on notice for possible fines of up to $1,500 per day for noncompliance. While the law doesn’t outright ban AI hiring tools based on certain biases, the threat of penalties and anti-discrimination lawsuits may deter some companies from moving forward with such potentially problematic technology.
Additionally, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has reached a notable settlement in its first case of an employer accused of using AI screening tools to allegedly unlawfully filter out older job candidates. This case suggests the EEOC and other agencies charged with monitoring and enforcing the anti-discrimination statutes will be closely following AI and its impact on the workplace.
AI Auditor Regulation
A core issue in identifying potential AI bias is the “black box” nature of many AI systems, which can lead to biased and unfair outcomes without developers fully understanding how or why. The audits required in New York are aiming to peer inside these boxes and identify these problems, but the industry of AI auditors is still finding its feet.
Because widespread AI use is so young, there are no set standards or certification processes yet to evaluate an auditors’ expertise. This parallels the early days of financial auditing before trusted firms like the Big Four collaborated and standardized the field with new regulations. As the AI field continues to evolve, so too will the workforce of AI auditors and regulators.
How AI May Impact Employment Law Mediations
As AI finds its way into the legal space, many are wondering how these tools will affect employment law mediations. There are a handful of potential impacts, such as AI’s ability to help mediators analyze large data sets. An example is an attorney using an AI platform to review past mediation cases and outcomes and to identify strategies or approaches that could lead to more successful resolutions.
AI tools may also become more popular for employment law mediations if automation starts replacing jobs. This could lead to more disputes around layoffs and workplace changes, signaling that these are new issues mediators may see in their employment law mediations.
However, AI currently has as many caveats and ethical concerns as it does potential. Concerning the mediation landscape, it’s important to keep these facts in mind:
- The use of AI in mediation raises ethical concerns, which can be quelled with improved transparency about how AI is being used and safeguards to prevent bias
- Regulation around the use of AI in mediation will likely be enacted, and regulators may restrict or ban certain uses of AI if fairness, bias, and transparency concerns aren’t adequately addressed
- Mediators may increasingly need to demonstrate that any AI tools they use have been audited and vetted for fairness. This will come in the form of audit reports, a requirement that’s already in effect for businesses in New York City
Visit my last AI in the Workplace blog series for more information on AI hiring tools and recent regulations, accessible here.
Experienced Employment & Title IX Mediator & ADR Professional
Twice-named a U.S. News Best Lawyer in America for employment and labor law, Angela Reddock-Wright is an employment, labor law & Title IX mediator and alternative dispute resolution professional. Known as the “Workplace Guru,” Angela is an influencer and leading authority on employment, workplace/HR, Title IX, hazing, and bullying issues. Furthermore, she’s been named a “Top 50 Woman Attorney” in California by Super Lawyers, a “Top California Employment Lawyer” by the Daily Journal, and one of Los Angeles’ “Most Influential Minority and Women Attorneys” by the Los Angeles Business Journal.
Angela is a regular legal and media commentator and analyst and has appeared on such media outlets as Good Morning America, Entertainment Tonight, Law and Crime with Brian Ross, Court TV, CNN, NewsNation, ABC News, CBS News, Fox 11 News, KTLA-5, the Black News Channel, Fox Soul – The Black Report, NPR, KPCC, Airtalk-89.3, KJLH Front Page with Dominique DiPrima, the New York Times, the Washington Post, the LA Times, Forbes.com, Yahoo! Entertainment, People Magazine, Essence Magazine, the Los Angeles Sentinel, LA Focus, Daily Journal, Our Weekly and the Wave Newspapers.
Angela is a member of the panel of distinguished mediators and arbitrators with Signature Resolution, a California dispute resolution company. She also owns her dispute resolution law firm, the Reddock Law Group of Los Angeles, specializing in the mediation and resolution of employment discrimination, harassment, retaliation, and other workplace claims, along with Title IX, sexual harassment, assault, and misconduct conduct cases, along with hazing and bullying cases in K-12 schools, colleges, and universities, fraternities, and sororities; fire, police and other public safety agencies and departments.
Be sure to follow me on Facebook and Instagram @iamangelareddockwright, LinkedIn at Linkedin.com/in/angelareddock, and tune in to my weekly radio show, KBLA Talk 1580’s Legal Lens with Angela Reddock-Wright each Saturday and Sunday at 11 am PST, or catch past episodes on Anchor.fm/Spotify. You can learn more about the radio show here – https://angelareddock-wright.com/radio-show/.
Also, learn more about my book – The Workplace Transformed: 7 Crucial Lessons from the Global Pandemic – here – https://angelareddock-wright.com/book/.
For media inquiries, please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information regarding resources mediation and dispute resolution resources for both employees and employers, connect with Angela on LinkedIn for new updates or contact her here. You may also follow her on Instagram.
This communication is not legal advice. It is educational only. For legal advice, consult with an experienced employment law attorney in your state or city.