Bureau of Labor Statistics

Five states account for majority of public sector work stoppages

November 10, 1998

From 1982 to 1997, California and four Midwest States accounted for the majority of major work stoppages in State and local government. Of the 116 total stoppages in the public sector during this period, 72 were in California, Illinois, Michigan, Ohio, and Pennsylvania. California led the five states with 25 work stoppages. Michigan had the second most with 15, followed by Illinois with 12, Ohio with 11, and Pennsylvania with 9.

Percent of total State and local government work stoppages for select States, 1982-97
[Chart data—TXT]

Although Illinois did not have the most work stoppages, it did lead the five States in number of workers idled by its work stoppages with 161,600. This resulted in more than 1.7 million days of idleness. California had the second highest total of workers idled (137,900), while Michigan had the second highest total of days idled (786,700).

The Bureau of Labor Statistics defines major work stoppages as strikes or lockouts that idle 1,000 or more workers. These data are a product of the BLS Office of Compensation and Working Conditions. Additional information is available from "1982-97 State and Local Government Work Stoppages and Their Legal Background" (PDF 40K), Compensation and Working Conditions, Fall 1998.


Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Five states account for majority of public sector work stoppages at https://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/1998/nov/wk2/art02.htm (visited January 21, 2022).


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