February 11, 2008
In 2007, the union membership rate for public sector workers (35.9 percent) was substantially higher than for private industry workers (7.5 percent).
Within the public sector, local government workers had the highest union membership rate, 41.8 percent. This group includes many workers in several heavily unionized occupations, such as teachers, police officers, and fire fighters.
Private sector industries with high unionization rates include transportation and utilities (22.1 percent), telecommunications (19.7 percent), and construction (13.9 percent). In 2007, unionization rates were relatively low in agriculture and related industries (1.5 percent) and in financial activities (2.0 percent).
These 2007 data on union membership are from the Current Population Survey. Unionization data are for wage and salary workers. Find out more in "Union Members in 2007," (PDF) (TXT) news release USDL 08-0092.