Major Work Stoppages (Annual) News Release


For release 10:00 a.m. (EST) Wednesday, February 10, 2010                                  USDL-10-0170

Technical information:
     (202) 691-6199   Workstoppagesinfo@bls.gov   http://www.bls.gov/wsp
Media contact:
     (202) 691-5902   PressOffice@bls.gov


                                        MAJOR WORK STOPPAGES IN 2009

     In 2009, there were five major strikes and lockouts involving 1,000 or more workers, the lowest number
since the major work stoppages series began in 1947, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today.  The
prior low for major work stoppages beginning in a calendar year was 14 in 2003.  The five major work stoppages
in 2009 idled 13,000 workers for 124,000 lost workdays, both record lows, and a large decrease compared to 2008
with 15 stoppages idling 72,000 workers for 1.95 million lost workdays.

     Since 2007, the number of major work stoppages and the number of employees involved in major work stoppages
have fallen sharply. (See charts 1 and 2.)  Average annual major work stoppages have continued to decline.  From
2000-2009, there were approximately 20 major work stoppages on average per year, compared with 35 per year from
1990-1999 and 83 from 1980-1989. (See table 1.)

     The largest work stoppage in 2009 in terms of number of days and total workdays idle was between Bell
Helicopter Textron and the United Auto Workers Local 218, lasting 27 workdays with 2,500 workers accounting for
67,500 lost workdays.  The largest work stoppage beginning in 2009 in terms of number of workers was between
the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority and the Transport Workers Union Local 234 with 5,500
workers involved in the work stoppage.  (See table 2.)

     The major work stoppages series, which dates back to 1947, covers strikes and lockouts involving 1,000 or
more employees and lasting at least one shift.



                                                TECHNICAL NOTE

     The term "major work stoppage" includes both worker-initiated strikes and employer-initiated lockouts that
involve 1,000 workers or more. BLS does not distinguish between lockouts and strikes in its statistics.

     Information on work stoppages is obtained from reports from the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service,
State labor market information offices, BLS Strike Reports from the Office of Employment and Unemployment Statistics,
and from major media sources.  One or both parties involved in the work stoppage (employer or union) is contacted
to verify the duration and number of workers idled by the stoppage.

     Days of idleness is calculated by multiplying the number of workers involved in the strike or lockout by the
number of days workers are off the job.  The number of working days lost for every major work stoppage is based on
a 5-day workweek (Monday through Friday), excluding Federal holidays.

Monthly major work stoppages data

     The National Compensation Survey compiles detailed monthly and time series statistics on major work stoppages
at http://www.bls.gov/wsp.

     Detailed data for each major work stoppage since 1993 includes the organization involved, location, beginning
and ending work stoppage dates, the number of workers, and days idle.

     Monthly time series data since 1981 have been published (http://data.bls.gov/cgi-bin/surveymost?ws) for the
following tables:

     * Number of work stoppages involving 1,000 workers or more beginning in the period
     * Number of work stoppages involving 1,000 workers or more in effect in the period
     * Number of workers involved in work stoppages beginning in the period
     * Number of workers involved in work stoppages in effect in the period
     * Days of idleness resulting from work stoppages in effect in the period
     * Days of idleness resulting from work stoppages in effect in the period, as a percent of estimated working time

     Major work stoppages detailed information and measures

     For more information on Work Stoppages methods and measures, see Chapter 8. National Compensation Measures of
the BLS Handbook of Methods at: www.bls.gov/opub/hom/pdf/homch8.pdf.



Table 1.  Work stoppages involving 1,000 or more workers, 1947-2009


                                      Number of                      Days idle(2)
                                        work      Numbers of
                                      stoppages     workers
              Period                  beginning    involved                 Percent of
                                         in      (thousands)-    Number      estimated
                                       period         (1)      (thousands)    working
                                                                              time(3)

2009...............................        5            13           124        (4)
2008...............................       15            72         1,954        .01
2007...............................       21           189         1,265        (4)
2006...............................       20            70         2,688        .01
2005...............................       22           100         1,736        .01

2004...............................       17           171         3,344        .01
2003...............................       14           129         4,091        .01
2002...............................       19            46           660        (4)
2001...............................       29            99         1,151        (4)
2000...............................       39           394        20,419        .06

1999...............................       17            73         1,996        .01
1998...............................       34           387         5,116        .02
1997...............................       29           339         4,497        .01
1996...............................       37           273         4,889        .02
1995...............................       31           192         5,771        .02

1994...............................       45           322         5,021        .02
1993...............................       35           182         3,981        .01
1992...............................       35           364         3,989        .01
1991...............................       40           392         4,584        .02
1990...............................       44           185         5,926        .02

1989...............................       51           452        16,996        .07
1988...............................       40           118         4,381        .02
1987...............................       46           174         4,481        .02
1986...............................       69           533        11,861        .05
1985...............................       54           324         7,079        .03

1984...............................       62           376         8,499        .04
1983...............................       81           909        17,461        .08
1982...............................       96           656         9,061        .04
1981...............................      145           729        16,908        .07
1980...............................      187           795        20,844        .09

1979...............................      235         1,021        20,409        .09
1978...............................      219         1,006        23,774        .11
1977...............................      298         1,212        21,258        .10
1976...............................      231         1,519        23,962        .12
1975...............................      235           965        17,563        .09

1974...............................      424         1,796        31,809        .16
1973...............................      317         1,400        16,260        .08
1972...............................      250           975        16,764        .09
1971...............................      298         2,516        35,538        .19
1970...............................      381         2,468        52,761        .29

1969...............................      412         1,576        29,397        .16
1968...............................      392         1,855        35,367        .20
1967...............................      381         2,192        31,320        .18
1966...............................      321         1,300        16,000        .10
1965...............................      268           999        15,140        .10

1964...............................      246         1,183        16,220        .11
1963...............................      181           512        10,020        .07
1962...............................      211           793        11,760        .08
1961...............................      195         1,031        10,140        .07
1960...............................      222           896        13,260        .09

1959...............................      245         1,381        60,850        .43
1958...............................      332         1,587        17,900        .13
1957...............................      279           887        10,340        .07
1956...............................      287         1,370        26,840        .20
1955...............................      363         2,055        21,180        .16

1954...............................      265         1,075        16,630        .13
1953...............................      437         1,623        18,130        .14
1952...............................      470         2,746        48,820        .38
1951...............................      415         1,462        15,070        .12
1950...............................      424         1,698        30,390        .26

1949...............................      262         2,537        43,420        .38
1948...............................      245         1,435        26,127        .22
1947...............................      270         1,629        25,720        (5)

  1 Number of workers involved includes only those workers who participated in work
stoppages that began in the calendar year. Workers are counted more than once if they
are involved in more than one stoppage during the reference period. Numbers are rounded
to the nearest thousand.
  2 Days idle includes all stopages in effect during the reference period. For work
stoppages that are still ongoing at the end of the calendar year, only those days of
idleness in the calendar year are counted.
  3 Agricultural and government employees are included in the calculation of estimated
working time; private households, forestry, and fishery employees are excluded.
  4 Less than .005.
  5 Data not available.



Table 2.  Work stoppages involving 1,000 or more workers beginning in 2009


                                           Industry    Beginning    Ending     Number of
           Organizations involved,         code(1)      date        date      workers(2)   Days idle
         location, and industry type


Bell Helicopter Textron Incorporated
  Fort Worth, TX,
  United Auto Workers
  Local 218
  Private Industry..................       336411    6/15/09      7/22/09       2,500       67,500

Interior Demolition Contractors
  Association
  New York, NY,
  Laborers International Union of
  North America Local 79,
  Mason Tenders District Council
  Private Industry..................       238910    7/01/09      7/07/09       1,500        6,000

Kent Public School District
  Kent, WA,
  Kent Education Association
  Local Government..................       611110    8/27/09      9/13/09       1,900       20,900

Southeastern Pennsylvania
  Transportation Authority
  Philadelphia, PA,
  Transport Workers Union
  Local 234
  Local Government..................       485111   11/03/09     11/09/09       5,500       27,500

University of Illnois
  Champaign-Urbana, IL,
  American Federation of Teachers,
  Graduate Employees Organization
  Local 6300
  State Government..................       611310   11/16/09     11/17/09       1,100        2,200

  1 Industry code is from the 2007 NAICS (North American Industry Classification System).
  2 The number of workers involved is rounded to the nearest 100.


Last Modified Date: February 17, 2010