U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission's Guidance on Software, Algorithms, Artificial Intelligence and the ADA

 

Employers now have a wide variety of computer-based tools available to assist them in hiring workers, monitoring worker performance, determining pay or promotions, and establishing the terms and conditions of employment. Employers may utilize these tools in an attempt to save time and effort, increase objectivity, or decrease bias. However, the use of these tools may disadvantage job applicants and employees with disabilities. When this occurs, employers may risk violating federal Equal Employment Opportunity (“EEO”) laws that protect individuals with disabilities.

The Questions and Answers in this document explain how employers’ use of software that relies on algorithmic decision-making may violate existing requirements under Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”). This technical assistance also provides practical tips to employers on how to comply with the ADA, and to job applicants and employees who think that their rights may have been violated.

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC” or “the Commission”) enforces, and provides leadership and guidance on, the federal EEO laws prohibiting employment discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, and sex (including pregnancy, sexual orientation, and gender identity), disability, age (over 40) and genetic information. This publication is part of an ongoing effort by the EEOC to educate employers, employees, and other stakeholders about the application of EEO laws when employers use employment software and applications, some of which incorporate algorithmic decision-making. For more information, please visit: The Americans with Disabilities Act and the Use of Software, Algorithms, and Artificial Intelligence to Assess Job Applicants and Employees | U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (eeoc.gov)