Sunday, July 12, 2020
Hawai'i Free Press

Current Articles | Archives

Friday, January 23, 2015
Hawaii Union Membership Slips to 21.8% -- 3rd in USA
By News Release @ 9:25 PM :: 3915 Views :: Hawaii Statistics, Labor

News Release from BLS January 23, 2015
In 2014, the union membership rate--the percent of wage and salary workers who were
members of unions--was 11.1 percent, down 0.2 percentage point from 2013, the U.S.
Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. The number of wage and salary workers
belonging to unions, at 14.6 million, was little different from 2013. 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. 

The data on union membership are collected as part of the Current Population Survey
(CPS), a monthly sample survey of about 60,000 households that obtains information
on employment and unemployment among the nation's civilian noninstitutional population
age 16 and over. For more information, see the Technical Note.

Highlights from the 2014 data:

   --Public-sector workers had a union membership rate (35.7 percent), more
     than five times higher than that of private-sector workers (6.6 percent).
     (See table 3.)

   --Workers in education, training, and library occupations and in protective
     service occupations had the highest unionization rate, at 35.3 percent for
     each occupation group. (See table 3.)

   --Men had a higher union membership rate (11.7 percent) than women
     (10.5 percent) in 2014. (See table 1.)

   --Black workers were more likely to be union members than were white, Asian,
     or Hispanic workers. (See table 1.)

   --Median weekly earnings of nonunion workers ($763) were 79 percent of
     earnings for workers who were union members ($970). (The comparisons of
     earnings in this release are on a broad level and do not control for many
     factors that can be important in explaining earnings differences.)
     (See table 2.)

   --Among states, New York continued to have the highest union membership rate
     (24.6 percent), and North Carolina again had the lowest rate (1.9 percent).
     (See table 5.)

Industry and Occupation of Union Members

In 2014, 7.2 million employees in the public sector belonged to a union, compared with
7.4 million workers in the private sector. The union membership rate for public-sector
workers (35.7 percent) was substantially higher than the rate for private-sector workers
(6.6 percent). Within the public sector, the union membership rate was highest for local
government (41.9 percent), which includes employees in heavily unionized occupations, such
as teachers, police officers, and firefighters. In the private sector, industries with
high unionization rates included utilities (22.3 percent), transportation and warehousing
(19.6 percent), telecommunications (14.8 percent), and construction (13.9 percent). Low
unionization rates occurred in agriculture and related industries (1.1 percent), finance
(1.3 percent), professional and technical services (1.4 percent), and food services and
drinking places (1.4 percent). (See table 3.)

Among occupational groups, the highest unionization rates in 2014 were in education,
training, and library occupations and protective service occupations (35.3 percent each).
The lowest unionization rates were in farming, fishing, and forestry occupations (2.5 percent)
and sales and related occupations (3.1 percent). (See table 3.)

Selected Characteristics of Union Members

The union membership rate was higher for men (11.7 percent) than for women (10.5 percent)
in 2014. (See table 1.) The gap between their rates has narrowed considerably since 1983,
when rates for men and women were 24.7 percent and 14.6 percent, respectively.

Among major race and ethnicity groups, black workers had a higher union membership rate
in 2014 (13.2 percent) than workers who were white (10.8 percent), Asian (10.4 percent),
or Hispanic (9.2 percent).

By age, the union membership rate was highest among workers ages 45 to 64--13.8 percent for
those ages 45 to 54 and 14.1 percent for those ages 55 to 64.

The union membership rate was 12.3 percent for full-time workers, more than twice the rate
for part-time workers, 5.8 percent.

Union Representation 

In 2014, 16.2 million wage and salary workers were represented by a union. This group
includes both union members (14.6 million) and workers who report no union affiliation
but whose jobs are covered by a union contract (1.6 million). (See table 1.) 


In 2014, among full-time wage and salary workers, union members had median usual weekly
earnings of $970, while those who were not union members had median weekly earnings of $763.
In addition to coverage by a collective bargaining agreement, this earnings difference
reflects a variety of influences, including variations in the distributions of union members
and nonunion employees by occupation, industry, age, firm size, or geographic region.
(See tables 2 and 4.)

Union Membership by State

In 2014, 30 states and the District of Columbia had union membership rates below that of the
U.S. average, 11.1 percent, 19 states had rates above it, and 1 state had a rate equal to that
of the nation. All states in the East South Central and West South Central divisions had union
membership rates below the national average, and all states in the Middle Atlantic and Pacific
divisions had rates above it. Union membership rates declined over the year in 27 states and
the District of Columbia, rose in 18 states, and were unchanged in 5 states. (See table 5.)

Nine states had union membership rates below 5.0 percent in 2014, with North Carolina having
the lowest rate (1.9 percent). The next lowest rates were in South Carolina (2.2 percent) and
Mississippi and Utah (3.7 percent each). Three states had union membership rates over 20.0
percent in 2014: New York (24.6 percent), Alaska (22.8 percent), and Hawaii (21.8 percent).
(See chart 1.)

State union membership levels depend on both the employment level and the union membership
rate. The largest numbers of union members lived in California (2.5 million) and New York
(2.0 million). Over half of the 14.6 million union members in the U.S. lived in just seven
states (California, 2.5 million; New York, 2.0 million; Illinois, 0.8 million; Pennsylvania,
0.7 million; and Michigan, New Jersey, and Ohio, 0.6 million each), though these states
accounted for only about one-third of wage and salary employment nationally.
Employed wage and salary workers, Members of unions, (HI) Hawaii
Year Annual
2004 126
2005 141
2006 139
2007 130
2008 136
2009 123
2010 111
2011 113
2012 116
2013 121
2014 124

Percent of employed, Members of unions, (HI) Hawaii
Year Annual
2004 23.7
2005 25.8
2006 24.7
2007 23.4
2008 24.3
2009 23.5
2010 21.8
2011 21.5
2012 21.6
2013 22.1
2014 21.8


TEXT "follow HawaiiFreePress" to 40404

Register to Vote


808 Silent Majority

808 State Update AM940


ACA Signups Hawaii



Alliance Defending Freedom

Aloha Life Advocates

Aloha Pregnancy Care Center

American Council of Trustees and Alumni

American Mothers of Hawaii



Antonio Gramsci Reading List

A Place for Women in Waipio

Astronomy Hawaii

Audit The Rail

Ballotpedia Hawaii

Better Hawaii 

Blaisdell Memorial Project

Broken Trust 

Build More Hawaiian Homes Working Group

CAFR Hawaii

Castaway Conservative

Children's Alliance Hawaii

Children's Rights Institute

Christian Homeschoolers of Hawaii

Citizens for Recall

Cliff Slater's Second Opinion

Coffee Break

CSIS Pacific Forum

DAR Hawaii

DVids Hawaii

E Hana Kakou Kelii Akina

E Māua Ola i Moku o Keawe

Farmers For Choice Hawaii


Fix Oahu!

Follow the Money Hawaii

Frank in Hawaii

Front Page Magazine

Frontline: The Fixers

Genetic Literacy Project

Get Off Your Butts!

God, Freedom, America

Grassroot Institute

Hawaii Aganst Assisted Suicide

Hawaii Aquarium Fish Report

Hawaii Aviation Preservation Society

Hawaii Catholic TV

Hawaii Christian Coalition

Hawaii Cigar Association

Hawaii Coalition Against Legalized Gambling

Hawaii ConCon Info

Hawaii Credit Union Watch

Hawaii Crime Victims' Rights

Hawaii Crop Improvement Association

Hawaii Debt Clock

Hawaii Defending Marriage

Hawaii Defense Foundation

Hawaii Family Advocates

Hawaii Family Forum

Hawaii Farmers and Ranchers United

Hawaii Farmer's Daughter

Hawaii Federalist Society

Hawaii Federation of Republican Women

Hawaii Firearm Community

Hawaii Fishermen's Alliance

Hawaii Future Project

Hawaii Gathering of Eagles

Hawaii History Blog

Hawaii Homeschool Association

Hawaii Jihadi Trial

Hawaii March for Life

Hawaii Meth Project

Hawaii's Partnership for Appropriate & Compassionate Care

Hawaii Public Charter School Network

Hawaii Rifle Association

Hawaii Right to Life -- Big Island

Hawaii Right to Life -- Oahu

Hawaii Shield Law Coalition

Hawaii Shippers Council

Hawaii Smokers Alliance

Hawaii State Data Lab

Hawaii Together

Heritage Foundation

HI Coalition Against Legalized Gambling



Hiram Fong Papers

Homeschool Legal Defense Hawaii

Honolulu Homeless Crisis

Honolulu Navy League

Honolulu Traffic

Horns of Jericho Blog

House Minority Blog

House Republican Caucus YouTube


Hump Day Report

I Vote Hawaii

If Hawaii News

Imua TMT

Inouye-Kwock, NYT 1992

Inside the Nature Conservancy

Inverse Condemnation

Investigative Project on Terrorism

Iowa Meets Maui

Jackson v Abercrombie

Jihad Watch

July 4 in Hawaii

Kahle v New Hope

Kakaako Cares

Kau TEA Party

Kauai Co GOP

Keep Hawaii's Heroes


Land and Power in Hawaii

Legislative Committee Analysis Tool

Lessons in Firearm Education

Lingle Years

Malulani Foundation

Managed Care Matters -- Hawaii

Malama Pregnancy Center of Maui

Mauna Kea Recreational Users Group

Middle East Forum--The Legal Project

Mililani Conservatives for Change

Military Home Educators' Network Oahu

Missile Defense Advocacy

MIS Veterans Hawaii

Muslim Brotherhood in America

NAMI Hawaii


National Christian Foundation Hawaii

National Parents Org Hawaii

National Wind Watch

New Hawaiian

New Zeal

NFIB Hawaii News

No GMO Means No Aloha

Northwest Economic Policy Seminar

Not Dead Yet, Hawaii

Now What I Really Think

NRA-ILA Hawaii

Oahu Alternative Transport

ObamaCare Abortion Hawaii


OHA Lies

Opt Out Today

Pacific Aviation Museum

Patients Rights Council Hawaii

PEACE Hawaii

People vs Machine

Pritchett Cartoons 

Pro-GMO Hawaii


Rental by Owner Awareness Assn

Republican Party -- Hawaii State

Research Institute for Hawaii USA

Rick Hamada Show

RJ Rummel

Robotics Organizing Committee

Save Dillingham Airfield

School Choice in Hawaii

SIFE Remington

SIFE W. Oahu 

Sink the Jones Act

Smart About Marijuana--Hawaii

St Marianne Cope

State Budget Solutions Hawaii

State Policy Network

Statehood for Guam

Tax Foundation of Hawaii

The Harriet Tubman Agenda

The Long War Journal

The Real Hanabusa

Time Out Honolulu

Trustee Akina KWO Columns

Truth About Trade & Technology - Hawaii

UCC Truths

Union Members Know Your Rights

US Tax Foundation Hawaii Info

Valor in the Pacific

VAREP Honolulu

West Maui Taxpayers Association

What Natalie Thinks

Whole Life Hawaii