U.S. union growth fueled by young workers
The recent uptick in U.S. union membership is being driven by young workers, according to recent data by the Economic Policy Institute (EPI).
In 2017, union membership in the United States grew by 262,000 members, and 76 percent of those new union members were under 35. Nearly a quarter of the 858,000 new jobs held by young workers were union jobs.
“Unions in the United States are enduring an attack by the Trump administration and anti-worker businesses, but this new data shows that instead of backing down, unions are making it happen for workers—particularly young workers,” said UNI General Secretary Philip Jennings.
Jennings continued, “Young workers face new challenges to job security and new tears in the social safety net, and instead of being enticed by the siren song of populism and the snake-oil of Trump, they are standing together and taking control of their destiny by organising. They are demanding less inequality and more opportunity.”
This year’s numbers are part of a broader trend. Since 2012, union membership among working people under 35 has continued to rise.
According to the EPI, younger workers are joining unions to address current workforce trends that are increasing work insecurity from the rise of part-time work and unpaid internships to skyrocketing numbers of contract employees.