Labor Union Representation Statistics for States

Just over 16 million workers were represented by unions in 2016, accounting for 12 percent of the U.S. workforce. Over the past few decades, both union representation and union membership rates have slowly declined. 

As a share of the total workforce, union representation is highest in New York (25 percent), Hawaii (21 percent) and Alaska (20 percent). By comparison, union workers account for less than 5 percent of the workforce in Georgia, Louisiana, North Carolina and South Carolina. Factors influencing the presence of labor unions include types of industries employing workers and individual states' right-to-work protections.

The following table lists estimated 2016 labor union statistics by state. Note that a small number of nonunion members are represented by union contracts, so union representation is slightly higher than reported union membership estimates.

SOURCE: BLS, 2016 annual averages

Historical State Union Representation Data


Statistics indicate union membership among private sector employees has slowly declined for the past several decades. For the public workforce, union membership has remained stable: