Now that my company has left from the weekend, and my recent job interview came and went (did not get the job), I want to catch up on two items from yesterday that caught my attention, and will impact the future of workers’ comp.
The first item comes from Joe Paduda.
Joe’s article, “What Job?” asks the question, “what job will injured workers return to?”, and states that many of the high-injury rate jobs that drive a lot of work comp premiums and services won’t exist in ten years, and a lot of low-injury rate jobs will disappear as well.
One industry that Joe sees as suffering jobs disappearing is the trucking industry, where the replacement of long-haul drivers with autonomous driving will leave many without employment. The trucking industry employs 3.5 million drivers and pays $40,000 a year.
Along with the loss of trucking jobs, are those jobs that depend on, and support the truckers and the trucking industry such as people who work at truck stops, wait staff, hotel staff, and mechanics.
To further the discussion, Tom Lynch, in Workers’ Comp Insider.com writes that artificial intelligence is going to bring change on a monumental scale.
According to Tom, “I suggest it is not hyperbole to predict that we are on the verge of an epochal change, something like a kind of mass extinction, and what’s going extinct is an enormous number of jobs. This change might be even more significant than humanity’s evolution from an agrarian to an industrial economy.
Tom mentions a report that Joe cites that suggests up to 47% of jobs run the risk of going the way of the Woolly Mammoth by 2025.
It is highly controversial and its conclusions have been hotly debated.
Even so, Tom says that the most conservative naysayers agree that the figure is at least 16% (but that figure doesn’t take into account the jobs that the AI revolution will create, estimated at about 9%, for a net job loss of 7%).
Regardless, he says, millions of jobs will be lost.
The next item is from Stephanie Goldberg of Business Insurance.
Stephanie reported that the Oklahoma Workers’ Compensation Commission unanimously ruled that the state’s opt-out law is unconstitutional.
The commission ruled that provisions of the Oklahoma Employee lnjury Benefit Act are “inoperable,” unconstitutionally depriving injured workers of equal protection and access to the court, according to Ms. Goldberg.
The ruling is immediately appealable to the state’s Supreme Court, so if they uphold the ruling, it would leave Texas as the one and only state with an opt-out option. Tennessee has not voted on the law this year.