Report: Unions Gained Hundreds of Thousands of New Members in 2017

By Sahid Fawaz

Over a quarter million workers became new union members last year.

The Hill reports:

“The number of Americans who belong to a labor union rose by about a quarter of a million in 2017, though the overall percentage of the workforce represented by a union remained at an all-time low.

New figures released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics on Friday show 10.7 percent of American workers are members of a labor union, unchanged from a year before.

That share represents 14.8 million, up 262,000 from 2016. The share did not change despite the increase because the economy added so many new jobs over the course of the year.

Since 1983, the first year in which the Bureau collected labor union data as part of its Current Population Survey, union membership has declined by almost half. That year, 20.1 percent of American workers were members of a union.

Today, just over a third of public-sector workers are union members, compared with just 6.5 percent of private sector workers. Public sector union membership has fallen by only two percentage points in the last 35 years, while private sector membership is down 10 points over the same period.

Unions and labor union opponents took very different messages from the annual government report. The AFL-CIO touted the quarter million new union members, while the pro-business Center for Union Facts spotlighted the decline in private-sector membership.”

For the rest of the story, check out the entire article at The Hill here.

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