Union membership in private industry, 2002

February 26, 2003

Among private industries, the union membership rate was the highest in transportation and public utilities in 2002, at 23 percent. Of all wage and salary workers in private industry, 8.5 percent were union members in 2002.

Union membership of wage and salary workers in private industry, 2002
[Chart data—TXT]

The construction and manufacturing industries also had higher-than-average unionization rates, at 17.2 percent and 14.3 percent, respectively. The industry with the lowest unionization rate in 2002 was finance, insurance, and real estate—1.9 percent. Other private industries with below-average unionization rates were agriculture; wholesale and retail trade; and services.

In contrast to private industry, 37.5 percent of government workers were union members in 2002.

These 2002 data on union membership are from the Current Population Survey. Unionization data are for wage and salary workers. Find out more in "Union Members in 2002," news release USDL 03-88.

Related Articles:


Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Union membership in private industry, 2002 on the Internet at http://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2003/feb/wk4/art03.htm (visited September 30, 2016).


Recent editions of Spotlight on Statistics

  • A look at healthcare spending, employment, pay, benefits, and prices
    As one of the largest U.S. industries, healthcare is steadily growing to meet the needs of an increasing population with an increasing life expectancy. This Spotlight looks at how much people spend on healthcare, current and projected employment in the industry, employer-provided healthcare benefits, healthcare prices, and pay for workers in healthcare occupations.

  • Employment and Wages in Healthcare Occupations
    Healthcare occupations are a significant percentage of U.S. employment. Some of the largest and highest paying occupations are in healthcare. This Spotlight examines employment and wages for healthcare occupations.

  • Fifty years of looking at changes in peoples lives
    Longitudinal surveys help us understand long-term changes, such as how events that happened when a person was in high school affect labor market success as an adult.