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Whistlin’ Dixie

Data released in January by the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that there was a slight dip in union membership in the South in 2016. Overall, membership dropped in 9 of 13 Southern States.

South Carolina and North Carolina hold the seats of states with the lowest unionization percentages at 1.6% and 3.0% of private sector workers unionized, respectively.

The Six Percent Solution

According to a recent study by the Heritage Foundation, only 6% of current private-sector union members actually voted for the union representing them. In many cases these employees applied for work at companies already represented by a union. Also, this isn’t necessarily an indication of the percentage of those workers that would support the union. However, because of the difficulties of decertifying a union, it is an indication of a problem that should be addressed by changes to labor law.

Once such attempt is the Employee Rights Act, which would require that a union secure the support of a majority of all workers in a unit it wishes to represent, rather than a majority of those who vote. It would also require the recertification of a union once more than half of those employees who originally voted for it have left the company.