Artificial Intelligence or AI is defined by the Oxford English Dictionary as "the theory and development of computer systems able to perform tasks normally requiring human intelligence, such as visual perceptions, speech recognition, decision-making, and translation between languages". The term is defined in popular culture, and in the eyes of employees the world over, as an ever-approaching threat. The World Economic Forum has discussed AI as a major element of the fourth industrial revolution (4IR) and something which will rapidly change our world and workplaces. Regardless of the definition, AI is coming into our workplaces and coming quickly. As with any change to workplaces, employment law will follow.
Japan has begun investigating ministries and agencies suspected of having padded its employment rates of people with disabilities for over 40 years to match a legal requirement, government sources said Thursday. The actual hiring rates are now expected to fall to less than 1 percent -- far lower than the government target of 2.5 percent for itself and below half of the publicly announced rates. It will also be significantly lower than the goal set for the private sector. As of June 1, 2017, about 6,900 people with disabilities were said to be hired by 33 national administrative agencies, or 2.49 percent of their total employment on average, achieving the then target of 2.3 percent. However, nearly 10 key ministries and agencies, including the transport and internal affairs ministries, have misrepresented the rates by including in the headcount personnel with relatively mild disabilities who do not carry "disability certificates."
Newly elected MPs will no longer be allowed to employ spouses and other relatives using taxpayers' money. The new rules will come into force at the next election, expected to take place in 2020, although the 151 MPs who currently employ "connected parties" will be able to continue to do so. The parliamentary watchdog, Ipsa, said employing family members was "out of step" with modern employment practices. Many MPs argue partners are uniquely placed to do the jobs expected of them. The Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority, which processes and polices MPs expenses, announced the ban as it published a revised version of the rulebook for MPs' claims.
Just how many hours do you need to work to be officially classified as "employed"? Steve Garner, a sociologist, recently tweeted about how his son had repeatedly turned up to work at a warehouse only to be regularly told he wasn't needed. Mr Garner's message was retweeted more than 8,000 times. In the replies, several people commented about the employment status of people who worked on zero-hour contracts. BBC Reality Check asked the Office for National Statistics (ONS) whether working just one hour a week was all that was needed to be officially classified as employed?