public sector unions

With Unions, the Numbers Tell the Story

Originally published at Townhall

Newly released data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) shows union membership rates fell nationwide last year, continuing a yearslong trend. BLS’s union membership numbers also show that private sector unions remain weak and unable to attract new members, yet public sector unions—including teacher unions—remain extremely powerful.  

These numbers suggest that the recent unionization drama with Amazon, Starbucks, and the auto industry says more about the media (which is heavily unionized) than about the private sector unionization movement. Considering the actual numbers (the membership rate in the private sector remains at just six percent of all workers), these disputes are desperate attempts by union organizers to keep their jobs rather than organic worker uprisings. 

Meanwhile, according to BLS, membership rates for public sector unions are five times greater than their private sector counterparts. A closer analysis of last year’s BLS data shows an even greater disparity in certain states (e.g., Connecticut and New Hampshire), where public sector union membership rates were around ten times greater than in the private sector. 

Read more at Townhall