Wisconsin’s mysterious spike in union membership


“Wisconsin had an increase of about 24,000 union members in 2013, while the overall number of wage and salaried workers dipped by about 36,000.”

How does this make sense?
Mostly private sector union growth?

If you’ll permit me saying the obvious, the public sector union trend here has been the opposite.

According to AP, Wisconsin union membership in the public sector fell from 53.4 percent in 2011 to just 37.6 percent in 2013.

Read more at Report: Bucking trend, Wisconsin union membership grows

Below you’ll see a couple of cut ‘n’ pasted screen captures from the BLS graph.

Wisconsin BLS data top of table 01 28 2014

Wisconsin BLS data

Source: BLS

Here are some more highlights from TalkUnion:

The total number of private-sector union members rose by 281,000, while the total number of public-sector union members fell by about 118,000. There are now more private-sector union members than public-sector members.

Industries with the biggest growth include construction (up 95,000), hospitals and Transportation Equipment Manufacturing
Sectors hit hardest include social assistance and administration and support services.

Union membership rates did not change in any meaningful way by gender:
10.5% of women and 11.9% of men were in unions.

States with the largest union membership rate growth include: Alabama (1.5 percentage points), Nebraska (1.3 points), Tennessee (1.3 points), Kentucky, (1.2 points), New York (1.2 points), Illinois (1.2 points) and Wisconsin (1.1 points).

States with the largest union membership rate declines include: Louisiana (-1.9 percentage points), Oregon (-1.8 points), Utah (-1.3 points), Wyoming (-1.0 points) New Hampshire (-0.9 points), Montana (-0.9 points) and Texas (-0.9 points).


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