Union membership provides improved access to critical benefits like paid leave, along with better pay, health insurance, and pensions. For women, this advantage is especially helpful for weathering crises like COVID-19 and the resulting “she-cession.”
In every state, unionized women out earn women in non-union jobs—an essential wage advantage that would increase women’s economic security following the pandemic-induced “she-cession.” This brief shares insights on the ways unions narrow gender wage gaps and improve economic security for all women.
As Labor Day approaches, we’re thinking about the jobs and opportunities that do the best job of promoting women’s economic mobility and security.
Growing the Numbers of Women in the Trades: Building Equity and Inclusion through Pre-Apprenticeship Programs
Greater access to apprenticeships in the skilled trades can help women achieve economic security and fill predicted skills shortages in construction. The construction trades provide good careers with family sustaining earnings.
This fact sheet outlines eight key policy priorities that are critical for increasing women’s economic opportunities and securing their futures.
Women Only Pre-Apprenticeship Programs: Meeting Skills Needs and Creating Pathways to Good Jobs for Women
The average salary for someone who completed an apprenticeship is $60,000 per year. The average salary of an electrician (the most common apprenticeship) on completion of an apprenticeship is $23 per hour; for a 40-hour week this translates to $920, substantially higher than the median weekly earnings for a worker with an Associate degree (of $836 in 2017).
Labor unions deserve credit for many of the workplace policies that Americans now take for granted—a 40-hour work week, a minimum wage, pay for overtime, and protections from health and safety hazards—and the labor movement continues to champion state and local policies such as paid sick days and paid family leave, policies that are beneficial to all working women and families.
This briefing paper presents an analysis of women’s union membership and the union wage and benefit advantage for women by state and by race/ethnicity. It is based on an analysis of the Current Population Survey. Wage and benefit data are for all workers covered by a union contract, irrespective of their membership in a union.
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