This is actually pretty incredible news. According to Mike Antonucci over at Intercepts, the National Education Association is down 70,000 teachers.
This passes for good news these days when it comes to union membership, but the National Education Association is down 70,000 members compared with this point last year. The reason it is relatively good news is because the union budgeted for a loss of 130,000 teachers and 10,000 education support employees in the 2012-13 school year.
Of course, the school year isn’t over yet, but the budget projection did seem excessive, considering the worst of the recession’s layoffs were already behind us. The situation for teacher union membership remains fluid, as there is still legislation pending in a number of states regarding collective bargaining, agency fee and payroll deduction, all of which can have a considerable effect on union membership.
Overall, union membership is down in the United States.
Union membership in the USA dropped half a percent in 2012 to levels not believed to be seen since the 1930s, driven largely by a decline in the number of government employees who are union members.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics on Wednesday released its estimates of union membership for this past year based on the Current Population Survey, a monthly sample of 60,000 households nationwide.
It found the percentage of wage and salary workers who were members of a union declining from 11.8% in 2011 to 11.4% last year. It estimated that 14.4 million workers belonged to a union.