Bureau of Labor Statistics confirms unions’ erosion of workforce share

The 14.7 million wage and salary workers who were members of unions in 2018 represented 10.5 percent of the U.S. workforce, down 0.2 percent year-over-year, a Bureau of Labor Statistics report confirms. The figure underscores a protracted union membership rate decline since 1983, the first year for which comparable worker data are available. BLS calculated a rank-and-file of 17.7 million workers that year, or 20.1 percent of the wage and salary workforce.

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Unions’ share of U.S. workforce falls farther

Sources: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics; CP staff

The 14.7 million wage and salary workers who were members of unions in 2018 represented 10.5 percent of the U.S. workforce, down 0.2 percent year-over-year, a Bureau of Labor Statistics report confirms. The figure underscores a sustained union membership rate decline since 1983, the first year for which comparable worker data are available. BLS calculated a rank-and-file of 17.7 million workers that year, or 20.1 percent of the wage and salary workforce. 

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Lawmaker trains on Davis-Bacon prevailing wage calculation

Sources: Associated Builders & Contractors, Washington, D.C.; CP staff

Adding to an early-2017 bill targeting the 1931 Davis-Bacon Act, Senator Jeff Flake (R-AZ) has introduced The Opportunity in Federal Construction Act (S. 1200), which directs the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) to use Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) data to calculate prevailing wages for federal and federally assisted construction projects. A BLS data method would replace the current practice of relying on the DOL Wage and Hour Division to calculate Davis-Bacon-bound job wage levels.

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Construction trades’ unionization rate continues slide

Sources: U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics; CP staff

Bureau of Labor Statistics figures show the percentage of U.S. construction workers belonging to unions dropped from 13.9 in 2014 to 13.2 last year. The figures are based on rank-and-file totals of 968,000 and 940,000 against 2014 and 2015 workforces, respectively, of 6.97 million and 7.1 million. The total percentage of construction workers represented by unions—local or association members plus workers whose jobs are covered by a union contract—was 14.7 and 14.0 for 2014 and 2015.

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Fatal workplace injury rate rises slightly in new BLS Census

A preliminary total of 4,679 fatal work injuries recorded in the U.S. during 2014 marks a 2 percent increase over prior year figures, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries. Preliminary 2014 figures show a fatal work injury rate at 3.3 per 100,000 full-time equivalent (FTE) workers, matching the 2013 level.

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Construction industry pledges to hire more than 100,000 veterans

Source: U.S. Department of Labor

During A National Symposium: Veterans’ Employment in Construction, a February 9 gathering in Washington, D.C., First Lady Michelle Obama and Labor Secretary Thomas Perez celebrated a broad coalition of construction employers and associations that have collectively pledged to hire 100,000 veterans over the next five years.

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