What Percentage Of U.S. Workers Are Union Members?

Authored by Zach Hrynowski of Gallup.com

As Americans prepare to celebrate the 125th anniversary of Labor Day on Monday, Gallup's latest measurement on labor union membership finds that 10% of full- and part-time U.S. workers belong to a union. This marks the second year in a row of the lowest level of union membership in over 15 years: from 2003 to 2017, union workers made up an average of 13% of the American workforce.

  • Over one-third of government employees (37%) belong to a union, versus 6% of all private sector employees.

  • Workers in the South are the least likely of any U.S. region to report being part of a union, with 5% saying they belong to a union. That contrasts with 15% and 14% of workers in the East and West, respectively. In the Midwest -- where organized labor and right-to-work laws have been the subject of intense political debate in recent years -- 10% of workers say they are union members.

  • 14% of workers reporting an annual household income of $100,000 or more are members of a union, compared with 3% of those in households earning less than $40,000 per year.

  • Employed Americans aged 35 to 54 (13%) are more than twice as likely as those aged 18 to 34 (6%) to be members of organized labor.