Are unions still a factor in the public sector? Please respond!

About 7.2 million employees in the public sector belonged to a union in 2014, says the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Within the public sector, the union membership rate was highest for local government (41.9 percent), which includes employees in heavily unionized occupations, such as teachers, police officers, and firefighters. What do you think?

What is the effect of public sector unions on local governments? Please choose your answer(s).


Unions provide workers with a living wage and other benefits.
61% (276 votes)
Governments with unionized workforces have less turnover and steady job performance.
53% (241 votes)
Governments enjoy a higher-quality workforce thanks to unions.
49% (225 votes)
Unions are bankrupting governments.
41% (187 votes)
Union-represented public employees get better salaries/benefits than what private-sector workers get.
41% (187 votes)
When governments use union workers, they spend more on construction & labor.
39% (176 votes)
Unions' burdensome work rules force governments to raise taxes.
38% (174 votes)
Union members support political candidates that union leaders want them to support.
37% (169 votes)
Unions spawn innovation in government.
35% (159 votes)
Unions dramatically affect poll results, especially in local elections.
32% (148 votes)
Total voters: 456

Discuss this poll 1

on Nov 25, 2015

When one reads local newspapers, serious magazines covering general news, or even American City and County Magazines, one reads how union negotiated wages and benefits, esp. retirement health care costs,are crowding out other government expenses, including first responders, infrastructure investments, and recreational facilities. One also reads how little public employees contribute to current (and retirement) health care costs, as well as pension obligations.
Most people look around them, to see what "other people are getting." When those in the private sector, whose retirement benefits are being cut, and whose current medical coverages are being reduced and the percentage of their costs which are zooming as deductibles climb and the number of in-system physicians and hospitals are reduced, and see public employees enjoying a high and even growing level of benefits, the reaction is becoming more and more severe and the repercussions will get deeper and deeper..

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