According to data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, an estimated 219,000 workers in the state were union members last year, up from 218,000 in 2018. The percentage of workers in unions was unchanged at 8.1%.
The number of workers represented by a union increased from 233,000 in 2018 to 245,000 last year. The percentage of workers represented by unions went from 8.6% to 9.1%. The increases in union representation in 2019 brought the state back to the level it was at in 2016 and 2017.
Wisconsin’s union membership and representation has been relatively steady in recent years after a tumultuous early portion of the decade that saw the passage of Act 10 and right-to-work legislation.
Thanks to Right to Work and Act 10, we know that people who want to be in a union are in a union. Those who don’t want to be in a union don’t have to be. I expect that that makes or healthy, vibrant unions full of people who want it.