Wisconsin union membership dipped sharply over two decades

MADISON, Wis. (AP) – A new report has found that Wisconsin saw the sharpest drop in union membership in the nation over the last 20 years.

The nonpartisan Wisconsin Policy Forum released a report Tuesday compiling data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and the federal Current Population Survey aggregated by professors from Georgia State and Trinity universities.

The data shows that union membership in Wisconsin declined by 9.9% between 2000 and 2021, the sharpest drop in the nation by almost three percentage points.

The report attributed the decline to the shrinking number of construction and manufacturing jobs in the state and Act 10, a law Republicans passed in 2011 that stripped most public employees of almost all their union rights.