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Union Membership Unchanged at 10.7% in 2017

The union membership rate–the percent of wage and salary workers who were members of unions–was…

  • February 18, 2018

The union membership rate–the percent of wage and salary workers who were members of unions–was unchanged at 10.7 percent in 2017, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics is reporting.

The number of wage and salary workers belonging to unions, at 14.8 million in 2017, edged up by 262,000 from 2016.

In 1983, the first year for which comparable union data are available, the union membership rate was 20.1 percent and there were 17.7 million union workers.

During 2017, the union membership rate of public-sector workers (34.4 percent) continued to be more than five times higher than that of private- sector workers (6.5 percent).

Workers in protective service occupations and in education, training, and library occupations had the highest unionization rates (34.7 percent and 33.5 percent, respectively).

Men continued to have a higher union membership rate (11.4 percent) than women (10.0 percent).

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