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January 1992, Vol. 115, No. 1
Edward J. Wasilewski, Jr.
C ontracts are set to expire or reopen in 1992 for about 2.7 million workers under 679 major collective bargaining agreements, nearly the same numbers of workers and contracts involved in 1991. Dominating the 1992 bargaining calendar will be the construction and telephone communications industries in the private sector and local governments in the public sector. The 2.7 million workers slated for bargaining constitute nearly one-third of the 8.3 million employees under major agreements (those covering 1,000 workers or more) in both private industry and State and local government. This year's labor and management negotiators will be facing many of the same issues that confronted those who negotiated contracts in 1991, as wages, health and family care benefits, and job security head the agenda for many bargainers.
Scheduled bargaining will involve 1.9 million workers in private industry, covered under 429 agreements. (See tables 1 and 2.) These workers constitute about one-third of the 5.7 million private sector workers under major agreements. Comparable proportions in 1990 and 1991 were 36 percent and 25 percent. Nearly 80 percent (1,496,000) of the private sector workers whose contracts are scheduled for renegotiation are in the nonmanufacturing sector. Among nonmanufacturing industries, bargaining will be heaviest in the construction and communications industries, with somewhat more than 400,000 workers in each industry affected. Negotiations will cover about 190,000 wholesale and retail trade workers, primarily in food stores, and just over 100,000 workers each in electric, gas, and sanitary services and in health services. The only manufacturing industry with more than 100,000 workers bargaining will be transportation equipment, primarily aerospace (116,000 workers).
This excerpt is from an article published in the January 1992 issue of the Monthly Labor Review. The full text of the article is available in Adobe Acrobat's Portable Document Format (PDF). See How to view a PDF file for more information.
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