R.I. had 4th highest share of workers represented by unions in U.S. in 2019

UNION MEMBERSHIP in Rhode Island in 2019 reflected 17.4% of all workers, the highest rate in New England. / COURTESY U.S. BUREAU OF LABOR STATISTICS
UNION MEMBERSHIP in Rhode Island in 2019 reflected 17.4% of all workers, the highest rate in New England. / COURTESY U.S. BUREAU OF LABOR STATISTICS

PROVIDENCE – The share of workers represented by unions in Rhode Island was 19% in 2019, a 0.5 percentage point increase year over year, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Wednesday.

The number of workers represented by unions was 90,000, an increase of 10,000 year over year.

Rhode Island had the highest union representation rate in New England and the fourth highest rate in the country.

Union membership reflected 17.4% of worker in Rhode Island in 2019, the same as the previous year. Union membership declined in that time from 89,000 to 83,000. Total employed also declined from 479,000 to 475,000 in that time.

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Hawaii had the highest share of workers represented by unions in 2019 at 25.5%, followed by New York at 22.7% and Washington at 20.2%. South Carolina had the lowest at 2.7%.

Share of workers represented by unions in New England:

  • Rhode Island: 19%
  • Connecticut: 16%
  • Maine: 13.7%
  • Massachusetts: 13.2%
  • Vermont: 12%
  • New Hampshire: 11.6%

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