A new survey, published in conjunction with National Employee Freedom Week, shows that many union members are simply not getting any value from their membership. In fact, 28.7% of respondents said that they would actually leave their union if they did not fear for their job in doing so.
With union membership low and stagnant, this represents almost four million workers interested in handing in their union cards.
Aside from the obvious problem of unions dumping piles of cash at the feet of politicians who are opposed to members’ beliefs, there are a number of other reasons that union membership has been slipping to multi-decade lows.
- It’s expensive: In many parts of the country membership runs more than $1000 per year.
- Bad service: Many union members don’t even get their letters and phone calls returned from their union representatives
- High paid union bosses: Members are resentful of these guys running all over the country, staying in luxury hotels, and eating expensive meals – all on the workers’ dime.
Additionally, many workers want to negotiate their own pay, based on their merits and abilities. The National Employee Freedom Week survey also uncovered this fact. In Colorado, 57% of union employees felt that individual workers should be allowed to negotiate their pay and benefits if they do not belong to a union.
Unions have outlived their usefulness, and members are voting with their feet. Gone are the days where terrible, unregulated, and unsafe conditions exist in meatpacking plants or in coal mines. In fact, nearly 50% of today’s American union members are government employees.
“School unions are one area of concern for us in Colorado, and serve as one good area of focus during National Employee Freedom Week. For example, there are school districts in Colorado that give teachers as little as 15 days a year to opt out of membership in a union, said AFP Colorado Director Michael Fields. “Alamosa only provides 10. It should not be difficult – or create a fear of shame – for teachers to opt out.”
More and more American workers are beginning to understand that they can burn their union card without losing their jobs. In turn, they will be able to take home more money, negotiate their own pay, and not fund political candidates with anti-business agendas, and the power of unions will continue to diminish.