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Please note: As of January 20, 2017, information in some news releases may be out of date or not reflect current policies.

OPA News Release: [01/23/2013]
Contact Name: Jason Surbey
Phone Number: (202) 693-4668
Release Number: 13-0135-NAT

Statement by Deputy Secretary of Labor Seth D. Harris regarding Bureau of Labor Statistics report on union membership in 2012

WASHINGTON — Deputy Secretary of Labor Seth D. Harris has issued the following statement regarding the Bureau of Labor Statistics report released today on union membership in 2012:

"Today the Bureau of Labor Statistics announced that, in 2012, the unionization rate of employed wage and salary workers was 11.3 percent. Among private sector employees, the rate was 6.6 percent.

"The data also show that among full-time wage and salary workers, union members have higher median weekly earnings than nonunion workers. The median weekly earnings of union members were $943, compared to $742 for nonunion workers.

"Other data have shown that union members have greater access to employment-based benefits such as health insurance, a retirement savings plan, and sick and vacation leave. Together, strong wages and benefits are good for workers and good for families.

"Union jobs are good jobs. They are essential to growing and maintaining a strong middle class, which is vital to the economic health of this country. It is critical that we continue to ensure all people have a voice in the workplace, and protect the right to organize and bargain collectively."