20 major work stoppages in 2018 involving 485,000 workers

February 12, 2019

In 2018, there were 20 major work stoppages involving 485,000 workers. The number of major work stoppages beginning in 2018 was the highest since 2007, when there were 21 major work stoppages. The number of workers involved in 2018 was the highest since 1986, when 533,000 workers were involved in work stoppages.

 Annual work stoppages involving 1,000 or more workers, 1947–2018
Year Number of work stoppages Number of workers involved Number of days idle

1947

270 1,629,000 25,720,000

1948

245 1,435,000 26,127,000

1949

262 2,537,000 43,420,000

1950

424 1,698,000 30,390,000

1951

415 1,462,000 15,070,000

1952

470 2,746,000 48,820,000

1953

437 1,623,000 18,130,000

1954

265 1,075,000 16,630,000

1955

363 2,055,000 21,180,000

1956

287 1,370,000 26,840,000

1957

279 887,000 10,340,000

1958

332 1,587,000 17,900,000

1959

245 1,381,000 60,850,000

1960

222 896,000 13,260,000

1961

195 1,031,000 10,140,000

1962

211 793,000 11,760,000

1963

181 512,000 10,020,000

1964

246 1,183,000 16,220,000

1965

268 999,000 15,140,000

1966

321 1,300,000 16,000,000

1967

381 2,192,000 31,320,000

1968

392 1,855,000 35,367,000

1969

412 1,576,000 29,397,000

1970

381 2,468,000 52,761,000

1971

298 2,516,000 35,538,000

1972

250 975,000 16,764,000

1973

317 1,400,000 16,260,000

1974

424 1,796,000 31,809,000

1975

235 965,000 17,563,000

1976

231 1,519,000 23,962,000

1977

298 1,212,000 21,258,000

1978

219 1,006,000 23,774,000

1979

235 1,021,000 20,409,000

1980

187 795,000 20,844,000

1981

145 729,000 16,908,000

1982

96 656,000 9,061,000

1983

81 909,000 17,461,000

1984

62 376,000 8,499,000

1985

54 324,000 7,079,000

1986

69 533,000 11,861,000

1987

46 174,000 4,481,000

1988

40 118,000 4,381,000

1989

51 452,000 16,996,000

1990

44 185,000 5,926,000

1991

40 392,000 4,584,000

1992

35 364,000 3,989,000

1993

35 182,000 3,981,000

1994

45 322,000 5,021,000

1995

31 192,000 5,771,000

1996

37 273,000 4,889,000

1997

29 339,000 4,497,000

1998

34 387,000 5,116,000

1999

17 73,000 1,996,000

2000

39 394,000 20,419,000

2001

29 99,000 1,151,000

2002

19 46,000 659,600

2003

14 129,200 4,091,200

2004

17 170,700 3,344,100

2005

22 99,600 1,736,100

2006

20 70,100 2,687,500

2007

21 189,200 1,264,800

2008

15 72,200 1,954,100

2009

5 12,500 124,100

2010

11 44,500 302,300

2011

19 112,500 1,020,200

2012

19 148,100 1,130,800

2013

15 54,500 289,900

2014

11 34,300 200,200

2015

12 47,300 740,000

2016

15 99,400 1,543,400

2017

7 25,300 439,800

2018

20 485,200 2,815,400

In 2018, the largest work stoppage by number of days idle was between the Arizona Education Association and the Arizona state government and involved 81,000 teachers and staff totaling 486,000 days of idleness. The second largest stoppage in 2018 involved the Oklahoma State Legislature and the Oklahoma Education Association accounting for 405,000 days idle.

The longest major work stoppage beginning in 2018 involved National Grid and the United Steelworkers Locals 12003 and 12012, accounting for 156,000 days idle in the current year. The National Grid work stoppage began on June 25, 2018, and was ongoing through 2018. Other notable major work stoppages beginning in 2018 involved the Marriott Corporation and the University of California Medical Centers.

These data are from the Work Stoppages program. To learn more, see “Major Work Stoppages in 2018”. Major work stoppages include both worker-initiated strikes and employer-initiated lockouts that involve 1,000 or more workers and last at least one shift. Days idle are calculated by multiplying the number of workers involved in the strike or lockout by the number of days workers are off the job, based on a 5-day workweek excluding federal holidays. 

SUGGESTED CITATION

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, 20 major work stoppages in 2018 involving 485,000 workers on the Internet at https://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2019/20-major-work-stoppages-in-2018-involving-485000-workers.htm (visited April 18, 2019).