Largest Decline in Private Sector Union Members in 25 Years

(p. A3) Organized labor lost 10% of its members in the private sector last year, the largest decline in more than 25 years. The drop is on par with the fall in total employment but threatens to significantly limit labor’s ability to influence elections and legislation.

On Friday, the Labor Department reported private-sector unions lost 834,000 members, bringing membership down to 7.2% of the private-sector work force, from 7.6% the year before. The broader drop in U.S. employment and a small gain by public-sector unions helped keep the total share of union membership flat at 12.3% in 2009. In the early 1980s, unions represented 20% of workers.

For the full story, see:
KRIS MAHER. “Union Membership Declines by 10%.” The Wall Street Journal (Sat., January 23, 2010): A3.
(Note: the online version of the article has the slightly different title “Union Membership Drops 10%.”)

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