America is unprepared for the “jobs apocalypse” automation will bring

In coming years, U.S. workers — especially low skilled, low wage workers — are set to face a major economic disruption as automation and the robotic revolution are expected to replace millions of jobs once held by humans.

But policymakers and businesses are ill-prepared to help workers navigate the transition and adapt the skills needed to survive the “economic tsunami,” Axios Editor Steve LeVine report

“The biggest takeaway is that the future is now,” LeVine told CBSN in an interview on Friday.

“We’re not prepared at all,” he said, for the “jobs apocalypse” resulting from automation.

Part of the problem is that policymakers are not moving quickly enough to update the education system and provide workers with the skills that will be needed when these bottom-tier jobs are replaced by automation.

“You see scores of companies complaining they can’t find enough skilled labor…they are not prepared to train new workers. And as a country we have not even started talking about, ‘How do we retrain our workforce?'” LeVine said.

At least 10 million U.S. jobs are at high risk of losing out to automation in the next decade as companies replace them with machines, a recent analysis from research firm CB Insights found.

Some of the top jobs at risk include “fast casual cooks” — think burger makers and coffee servers. One burger chain in California is already making use of a robot, called “Flippy,” to cook burgers. Movers, warehouse workers and retail workers including cashiers are also threatened, according to the report. As autonomous cars move from myth to reality, taxi drivers, too, could become a thing of the past.


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