Hennepin County Medical Center - Local 977

Union Advantage Shows Up on Every Paycheck

Union workers make $10,400 a year more, on average, than nonunion workers. That’s like getting a raise of $200 a week, or $5 more an hour. That’s one of the facts hidden in a 2014 report from the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Public workers are among those demonstrating the advantage of being unionized on the job. Nationwide, state government workers make $153 a week more, on average, if they’re in a union bargaining unit, compared with peers who are not. Local government employees make $246 a week more on average than workers doing the same kinds of jobs in nonunion cities, counties, and school districts.

Wages aren’t the only way unions deliver stronger economic security for their members. Other BLS statistics show that union members tend to have more benefits, better benefits, and pay less out of pocket for those benefits than workers who are not represented by a union at work.

Being in a union also continues to erase the historical wage gap that women and minorities face:

  • In the economy overall, women get paid only $77 for every $100 that men make. However, women who have a union job turn that gap upside-down: They actually make an average of $67 a week more than men who are not in a union.
  • African-Americans make an average of $4.65 an hour more if they are in a union. Unionized Latino workers make an average of $7.28 an hour more.
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