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A Lot of Americans Believe Racial and Ethnic Bias Is a Problem

The Pew Research Center surveyed a random group of 11,004 U.S. adults in mid-December 2022. In its survey, the Center learned that a majority of white, Black, Hispanic, and Asian Americans think racial and ethnic bias is a concerning issue in hiring and performance evaluations.

Black adults see the largest impact of bias, with 64% viewing it as a "major" problem. Forty-nine percent of Asians and 41% of Hispanics also consider bias a big concern. The data is similar in response to questions about unfair treatment in the workplace. About 56% of Black individuals asked see significant bias in their work evaluations compared to around 40% of Hispanic and Asian Americans. Just 23% of white Americans believe there is bias.

The Pew Research Center notes companies often turn to artificial intelligence for help. There is controversy over whether AI avoids biases or reinforces biases built into the data it mines. Pew found a good portion of those surveyed believe AI has the potential to result in more equitable practices. Black individuals were the most skeptical that AI will reduce bias. The survey revealed that many Americans are concerned about applying for a job with companies using AI in hiring and workplace decision-making. Sixty-six percent of the people said they would not want to apply. "Asian, Hispanic and Black Americans are more likely than those who are white to say that they would apply to such an employer." To explain their reasoning, one woman said, "AI programmed to identify qualifications and allocate appropriate salary regardless of race or gender" could end workplace discrimination. Others said they believe AI will reflect the biases of humanity.