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EEOC and DOJ Warn of AI Violations of ADA

May 26, 2022

The EEOC and DOJ have each released technical assistance documents warning of unlawful discrimination against both applicants and employees with disabilities when employers use AI to make employment decisions. The EEOC is focused on preventing bias that would violate the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Its guidance applies to the growing use of AI and algorithmic decision-making tools in recruitment as well as in other employment decisions such as pay and promotions. It identifies major concerns for employers, practices they should consider to mitigate the risk of ADA violations, examples of when they might be held liable under the ADA, and steps applicants and employees can take to raise concerns.

The guidance is not a new policy; rather, it explains existing principles for the enforcement of the ADA. It follows the EEOC’s Artificial Intelligence and Algorithmic Fairness Initiative, which examined the use of emerging technologies in the context of federal civil rights laws. A number of jurisdictions, including Illinois and New York City, have already begun to pass laws that would regulate using certain types of AI and similar software tools in employment decisions.

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