Union membership rate 11.3 percent in 2013, the same as in 2012
January 28, 2014
The union membership rate—the percentage of wage and salary workers who were members of unions—was 11.3 percent in 2013, the same as in 2012. Public-sector workers had a union membership rate of 35.3 percent in 2013. That was more than five times higher than the rate for private-sector workers, 6.7 percent.
|Year||Total||Private sector||Public sector|
Within the public sector, the union membership rate was highest in 2013 for local government workers, 40.8 percent. Local government includes employees in heavily unionized occupations, such as teachers, police officers, and firefighters. The union membership rate in 2013 was 30.9 percent among state government workers and 26.5 percent among federal government workers.
In the private sector, industries with high unionization rates include utilities (25.6 percent), transportation and warehousing (19.6 percent), and construction (14.1 percent). Low unionization rates occurred in agriculture and related industries (1.0 percent), financial activities (2.0 percent), professional and business services (2.4 percent), and leisure and hospitality (2.7 percent).
Transportation and warehousing
Health care and social assistance
Mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction
Leisure and hospitality
Professional and business services
Agriculture and related industries
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Union membership rate 11.3 percent in 2013, the same as in 2012 on the Internet at https://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2014/ted_20140128.htm (visited March 22, 2019).
Recent editions of Spotlight on Statistics
- 25 years of Worker Injury, Illness, and Fatality Case Data
Examines detailed historical data on work-related injuries, illnesses, and fatal injuries.
- Occupational employment projections through the perspective of education and training
Examines employment, projected employment growth, and wages for occupations with different education and training requirements.
- Workers in Alternative Employment Arrangements
A look at independent contractors, on-call workers, temporary help agency workers, and workers provided by contract firms.
- Labor force characteristics of people with a disability
Examines the labor force characteristics of people with a disability and compares them with the characteristics of people with no disability.