Union members earning more, as density steadies: ABS

Trade union members earn almost $300 a week more than their non union counterparts, according to ABS data.

The Characteristics of Employment Survey shows that the median pay for union members in their main job is $1300 per week, compared to $1025 for non union employees.

In what might be considered a further fillip for the union movement, the survey, conducted in August, confirmed that the recent historical decline in membership has levelled off, with a drop of just 0.1% in the past two years.

The fall from 15.6% union membership in August 2016 to 15.5% this year largely arrests a trend which saw a 0.6% decline in the previous two year period.

Of the 9,910,200 full and part time employees who responded to the survey’s questions on unionisation, 1,535,700 reported being members.

The industries with the highest proportion of trade union employees were education and training (33%), followed by public administration and safety (30%) and electricity, gas, water and waste services (29%).

Meanwhile, the survey identified that 4% of workers are now registered with labour hire firms or employment agencies, earning a median weekly income of $1023.

The ABS until 2014 released union membership data annually, but it is now only published every second year.

Characteristics of Employment, Australia, August 2018, 6333.0

(This article originally appeared in Workplace Express)