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News Release Information

20-146-KAN
Friday, January 31, 2020

Contacts

Technical information:
Media contact:
  • (816) 285-7000

Union Members in Colorado – 2019

In 2019, union members accounted for 9.0 percent of wage and salary workers in Colorado, compared with 11.0 percent in 2018, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Assistant Commissioner for Regional Operations Stanley W. Suchman noted that the union membership rate for the state was at its peak in 2018 and recorded a series low of 6.6 percent in 2010. (See chart 1 and table A.) Nationwide, union members accounted for 10.3 percent of employed wage and salary workers in 2019, down by 0.2 percentage point from 2018. Since 1989, when comparable state data became available, union membership rates in Colorado have been below the U.S. average with one exception in 2018.

Colorado had 237,000 union members in 2019. In addition to these members, another 22,000 wage and salary workers in Colorado were represented by a union on their main job or covered by an employee association or contract while not union members themselves. (See table A.) Nationwide, 14.6 million wage and salary workers were union members in 2019 and 1.8 million wage and salary workers were not affiliated with a union but had jobs covered by a union contract.

Table A. Union affiliation of employed wage and salary workers in Colorado, annual averages, 2009–2019 (numbers in thousands)
YearTotal employedMembers of unions (1)Represented by unions (2)
TotalPercent of employedTotalPercent of employed

2009

2,1751537.01818.3

2010

2,1301406.61718.0

2011

2,1861798.22039.3

2012

2,1651697.81908.8

2013

2,2431717.62079.2

2014

2,3282219.525010.7

2015

2,3101948.42159.3

2016

2,4382389.826310.8

2017

2,4942389.627311.0

2018

2,56428111.030712.0

2019

2,6312379.02599.8

Footnotes:
(1) Data refer to members of a labor union or an employee association similar to a union.
(2) Data refer to both union members and workers who report no union affiliation but whose jobs are covered by a union or an employee association contract.

Note: Data refer to the sole or principal job of full- and part-time wage and salary workers. All self-employed workers are excluded, both those with incorporated businesses as well as those with unincorporated businesses. Updated population controls are introduced annually with the release of January data.

In 2019, 28 states and the District of Columbia had union membership rates below that of the U.S. average, 10.3 percent, while 21 states had rates above it and 1 state had the same rate. (See table 1.) Eight states had union membership rates below 5.0 percent in 2019. South Carolina and North Carolina had the lowest rates (2.2 percent and 2.3 percent, respectively). The next lowest rates were in Texas and Virginia (4.0 percent each). Two states had union membership rates over 20.0 percent in 2019: Hawaii (23.5 percent) and New York (21.0 percent). (See chart 2.)

Over half of the 14.6 million union members in the U.S. lived in just seven states (California, 2.5 million; New York, 1.7 million; Illinois, 0.8 million; Pennsylvania, 0.7 million; and New Jersey, Ohio, and Washington, 0.6 million each), though these states accounted for only about one-third of wage and salary employment nationally.


Technical Note

The estimates in this release are obtained from the Current Population Survey (CPS), which provides basic information on the labor force, employment, and unemployment. The survey is conducted monthly for the Bureau of Labor Statistics by the U.S. Census Bureau from a scientifically selected national sample of about 60,000 eligible households. The union membership data are tabulated from one-quarter of the CPS monthly sample and are limited to wage and salary workers. All self-employed workers are excluded.

Beginning in January of each year, data reflect revised population controls used in the CPS. Additional information about population controls is available on the BLS website at www.bls.gov/cps/documentation.htm.

Information about the reliability of data from the CPS and guidance on estimating standard errors is available at www.bls.gov/cps/documentation.htm#reliability.

Definitions

The principal definitions used in this release are described briefly below.

Union members. Data refer to members of a labor union or an employee association similar to a union.

Union membership rate. Data refer to the proportion of total wage and salary workers who are union members.

Represented by unions. Data refer to both union members and workers who report no union affiliation but whose jobs are covered by a union or an employee association contract.

Wage and salary workers. Workers who receive wages, salaries, commissions, tips, payment in kind, or piece rates. The group includes employees in both the private and public sectors. Union membership and earnings data exclude all self-employed workers, both those with incorporated businesses as well as those with unincorporated businesses.

Information in this release will be made available to sensory impaired individuals upon request. Voice phone: (202) 691-5200, Federal Relay Service: (800) 877-8339.

Table 1. Union affiliation of employed wage and salary workers by state, 2018-2019 annual averages (numbers in thousands)
State20182019
Total
employed
Members of unions(1)Represented by
unions(2)
Total
employed
Members of unions(1)Represented by
unions(2)
TotalPercent
of
employed
TotalPercent
of
employed
TotalPercent
of
employed
TotalPercent
of
employed

Alabama

1,9501809.219610.12,0411738.51999.8

Alaska

2995518.56020.02824817.15318.7

Arizona

2,9431565.31916.53,0281745.72147.1

Arkansas

1,176564.8625.31,200625.2715.9

California

16,3992,40514.72,58715.816,4852,50415.22,72616.5

Colorado

2,56428111.030712.02,6312379.02599.8

Connecticut

1,67726816.028016.71,68024414.526916.0

Delaware

4344510.34710.8432388.7439.9

District of Columbia

354359.94111.6361349.33710.2

Florida

8,7024845.65886.88,8275516.26677.6

Georgia

4,4662014.52495.64,4221804.12235.0

Hawaii

60113923.114624.357413523.514725.5

Idaho

733344.7415.6764374.9466.0

Illinois

5,69478613.883914.75,65877113.683214.7

Indiana

3,0492698.82839.33,0072498.32969.8

Iowa

1,4611137.71298.81,543976.31227.9

Kansas

1,283907.012910.11,2801128.713010.1

Kentucky

1,8121618.920711.41,7861448.01699.5

Louisiana

1,785895.01045.81,784945.31086.1

Maine

5737412.98514.85886911.88113.7

Maryland

2,78430711.033612.12,91233011.337112.8

Massachusetts

3,39746413.749314.53,39740612.044913.2

Michigan

4,32062514.566315.44,32358913.664815.0

Minnesota

2,63439515.042116.02,66236413.738114.3

Mississippi

1,121585.1807.11,105706.3938.4

Missouri

2,6752519.428310.62,66129711.133312.5

Montana

4275011.86014.04374610.55212.0

Nebraska

882596.6718.0894758.4869.6

Nevada

1,37619113.921615.71,37920114.622216.1

New Hampshire

6646810.27711.66776910.37911.6

New Jersey

3,93558714.963916.24,09464215.771217.4

New Mexico

812566.8678.2813587.1728.8

New York

8,4041,87222.32,02724.18,2531,73221.01,87722.7

North Carolina

4,3311182.71744.04,3961022.31503.4

North Dakota

343185.2236.7356216.0277.5

Ohio

5,05463912.672214.35,12761011.967313.1

Oklahoma

1,583905.71177.41,554966.21237.9

Oregon

1,73824213.925614.71,77225514.427715.7

Pennsylvania

5,57570112.674813.45,64267612.074013.1

Rhode Island

4798317.48918.54758317.49019.0

South Carolina

2,016552.7723.62,140472.2592.7

South Dakota

387225.6287.1395225.6266.7

Tennessee

2,8161555.51796.42,9471354.61625.5

Texas

11,9895124.36535.412,3344974.06425.2

Utah

1,343564.1765.71,409624.4835.9

Vermont

2913110.53411.62903311.23512.0

Virginia

3,8751684.32135.53,8811564.02015.2

Washington

3,27064919.867120.53,39363818.868420.2

West Virginia

6846810.07410.87047210.27811.1

Wisconsin

2,7002198.12338.62,6982188.12459.1

Wyoming

235156.5187.7243187.3218.7

Footnotes
(1) Data refer to members of a labor union or an employee association similar to a union.
(2) Data refer to both union members and workers who report no union affiliation but whose jobs are covered by a union or an employee association contract.

Note: Data refer to the sole or principal job of full- and part-time wage and salary workers. All self-employed workers are excluded, both those with incorporated businesses as well as those with unincorporated businesses. Updated population controls are introduced annually with the release of January data.

 

Last Modified Date: Friday, January 31, 2020