ABC: Unionized construction workforce slide continues

Sources: Associated Builders and Contractors, Washington, D.C.

An Associated Builders and Contractors analysis of 2023 union membership data published by finds at least 90 percent of workers in the private construction industry do not belong to a union in 29 states, up from 26 and 24 states in the prior two years. North Carolina, Mississippi, Maine, South Carolina and Texas lead the current list of states with the highest percentages of nonunion construction workers. 


Nationally, an all-time high 89.3 percent of construction workers are not part of a union, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, up from 88.3 percent in 2022. “Approximately 7.9 million construction industry professionals did not belong to a union in 2023, and the number of merit shop construction professionals continues to grow year after year,” says ABC Vice President of Regulatory, Labor and State Affairs Ben Brubeck. The trend is counter to pro-organized labor White House policies, he adds, that “threaten to inflate construction costs, steer public works contracts to donors with little competition and exacerbate the construction industry’s skilled labor shortage—all of which stand to undermine taxpayer investments in America’s infrastructure, clean energy and manufacturing projects.”

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