Frequently Asked Questions

1) When are union dues collected?
Union dues are not collected until you ratify a first agreement (contract)

2) Are there any initiation fees involved when first organizing at a workplace?
Initiation fees are waived for all newly organized units.

3) What are some characteristics of union members?

The union membership rate was higher for men (11.9 percent) than for women (10.5 percent) in 2013.

The gap between their rates has narrowed considerably since 1983, when rates for men

And women were 24.7 percent and 14.6 percent, respectively.

Among major race and ethnicity groups, black workers had a higher union membership rate in 2013 (13.6 percent) than workers who were white (11.0 percent), Asian (9.4 percent), or Hispanic (9.4 Percent) by age, the union membership rate was highest among workers ages 45 to 64—14.0 percent for those

Ages 45 to 54 and 14.3 percent for those ages 55 to 64.

Full-time workers were about twice as likely as part-time workers to be union members, 12.5 percent compared with 6.0 percent.

Union Representation

In 2014, 16.2 million wage and salary workers were represented by a union. This group includes both union members (14.5 million) and workers who report no union affiliation but whose jobs are covered by a union contract (1.5 million). Private-sector employees comprised more than half

(810,000) of the 1.5 million workers who were covered by a union contract but were not members of a union.


In 2014, among full-time wage and salary workers, union members had median usual weekly earnings

Of $970, while those who were not union members had median weekly earnings of $763. In addition to coverage by a collective bargaining agreement, this earnings difference reflects a variety of influences, including variations in the distributions of union members and non-union employees by occupation, Industry, firm size, or geographic region.

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