NFL concussion settlement discrimination

April 2020

According to the Wall Street Journal, a group of Black former National Football League (NFL) players has filed a federal lawsuit claiming that an evaluation system used for the NFL's USD 1 billion player concussion settlement favoured White players.

The players argue that the system blocked some Black claimants from securing payouts by assuming they had lower cognitive functioning when healthy than white players.

In June 2021, the NFL agreed to halt the use of 'race-norming', which assumes Black players start with lower cognitive function, and has since stated it would make changes to the concussion settlement.

However, the claimants remain unclear how the changes might affect them, whether their prior tests will be rescored, or if they must go undergo another round of cognitive testing.

Operator: National Football League (NFL)
Developer:
National Football League (NFL), BrownGreer
Country: USA
Sector:
Media/entertainment/sports/arts
Purpose: Evaluate dementia claims
Technology: Scoring algorithm
Issue: Bias/discrimination - racial
Opacity: Governance; Black box; Complaints/appeals