Yet Another Reason Why Today's Unions Suck: Dues Devour Wage Increases

On the eve of Obama’s NLRB unleashing its new rules giving unions the ability to hold ambush elections—that is, the evisceration of employers’ ability to question or challenge unions in their quest to cherry-pick voting units—more data was just released by the Bureau of National Affairs that calls into question why anyone in their right mind would pay dues to a union today.


In addition to the $369 billion in underfunded union (private-sector) pension plans, the abundant evidence that unions kill companies and destroy jobs, today’s unions are doing such a miserable job at the one thing they’re supposed to do—negotiate contracts—that union members should demand refunds from their union bosses.

According to the April 9th issue of the Bureau of National Affairs Daily Labor Report (subscription required), unions negotiated contracts in 2011 that, in 41% of the contracts, employees received no increase in the contracts’ first year.

While 41% of the contracts negotiated by unions in 2011 contained wage freezes, according to BNA’s survey, of the contracts where increases were negotiated, the average wage increase that was obtained for the first year was a pathetic 1.4%.

According to BNA:

A Bloomberg BNA analysis of collective bargaining agreements negotiated in 2011 found that the average first-year wage increase under contracts negotiated last year was 1.4 percent, compared with 1.6 percent reported in 2010. The average second-year increase in 2011 was 1.7 percent, compared with 2 percent in 2010, and the average third-year increase was 2.1 percent, compared with 2.3 percent a year earlier….


Given that union dues for most union members range from around 1.3% to 5% of pay, once union dues are deducted from members’ wages, the negotiated increases unions “achieved” for their members in 2011 are eaten up (and then some) by union dues.

Of course, union bosses continue to blame “the 1%” for their failure to garner anything better for their union members. However, the reality is, today’s unions have become nothing more than parasites sucking the life out of  job creators and their employees.


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