Most Private-Sector Workers Do Not Value Unions Enough to Want to Pay Dues

(p. A17) The annual BLS report on union membership released last week shows that unions lost nearly a quarter-million members in 2021, with private-sector membership dropping to a historic low of 6.1%. Even in retail and healthcare, which labor organizers targeted over pandemic-related safety concerns, union membership declined in 2021 from 2020.

. . .

. . . thinking well of unions and wanting to pay dues to be represented by one aren’t the same. I recently moderated focus groups of workers 18 to 29 in the Midwest and on the East and West coasts. While most said positive things about unions, only a handful wanted to join one.

. . .

The “historic” worker strife that has drawn media attention is more fiction than fact. Don’t take my word for it: The socialist magazine Jacobin reviewed the new BLS data on work stoppages and concluded that 2021 “was a quiet year, even by recent standards.”

For the full commentary, see:

Michael Saltsman. “Big Labor’s Resurgence That Wasn’t.” The Wall Street Journal (Monday, January 24, 2022): A17.

(Note: ellipses added.)

(Note: the online version of the commentary has the date Jan. 23, 2022, and has the same title as the print version.)

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