WASHINGTON, D.C. -- 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.
|Member of a union||Number of interviews|
|Employed U.S. adults||10||1294|
|18 to 34||6||326|
|35 to 54||13||562|
|$40,000 to <$100,000||11||517|
|Private sector employee||6||693|
|Based on aggregated data from August 2018 and August 2019|
Gallup measures American labor union membership each August as part of its Work and Education poll -- one of 12 surveys that make up the Gallup Poll Social Series.
Gallup's full trend on labor union membership is available on the Labor Unions "Topics A to Z" page.
Explore Gallup articles about labor unions on the "Unions Topics" page.