Ever heard of union workers and labor unions? Yes, do you know those endless dialogues between some groups and the management/government? That’s the job of a labor union. Therefore, this article will focus on the highest-paid workers in the USA as well as information on labor unions.
Table of contents
- What Is a Labor Union?
- What are the sections of workers that a union might be organized into?
- Who Constitutes Trade Unions and Workers?
- What Is Union Job?
- Benefits of Labour Union
- Is A Union Job Worth It?
- Do Union Workers Make Good Money?
- How Much Do Union Workers Make?
- How To Become A Union Worker
- Highest Paid Union Workers
- 4. Doctors
- 5. Lawyers
- 6. Marine Service Technician
- 7. Airline Manager
- 8. Firefighter
- 9. Customer Service Representatives
- 10. Plumbing Technician
- 11. Police Officer
- 12. Truck Driver Trainer
- 13. Nuclear Power Reactor Operator
- 14. Nurse
- 15. Nurse Practitioner
- 16. Construction Managers
- 17. Producer
- 18. Machine Parts Process Lead
- 19. Powerplant Operators
- 20. Film or Television Director
- 21. Electric Project Manager
- FAQs on Highest Paid Union Workers
What Is a Labor Union?
A trade union is otherwise known as a labor union in American English and is often simply referred to as a union.
It is an organization of workers who have come together for the purpose of achieving common goals, such as protecting the integrity of their trade, improving safety standards, and attaining better wages, benefits (such as health care, vacation, and retirement), and working conditions.
This is through the increased bargaining power commanded by solidarity among workers that have identified with the union.
Commonly, trade unions fund the formal organization, head office, and legal team functions of the trade union through regular fees or union dues contributed by the members of the Union.
The workplace volunteers make up the delegated staff of the trade union representation and they are appointed by members in democratic elections.
A trade union’s elect-leadership sets up a bargaining committee to bargain with the employer on behalf of union members (rank and file members) and take on a labor contract negotiation (collective bargaining) with employers.
What are the sections of workers that a union might be organized into?
The basic purpose of a trade union and any such association or union is the “maintenance or improvement of the conditions of the employment of its workers”.
Unions may organize the following section of workers:
- craft unionism: particular section of skilled workers
- general unionism: this comprises a number of workers from different trades.
- industrial unionism: all workers within a particular industry
The agreements reached by a union are obligatory on the following:
- rank and file members,
- the employer and
- other non-members workers, in some cases.
Who Constitutes Trade Unions and Workers?
From inception, trade unions are known for a constitution that bears the details of the governance of their bargaining unit and also has governance at various levels of government depending on the industry in which they are legally binding to their negotiations and functioning.
Trade unions originated from Great Britain but became popular in many countries during the Industrial Revolution.
Trade unions may consist of the following:
- Individual workers,
- past workers, students,
- apprentices or
- unemployed individuals.
The density of trade unions is dependent on the percentage of workers belonging to a trade union. Trade unions are denser in the Nordic countries.
What Is Union Job?
A union job is a job where an individual is a part of a labor union with other workers who are members of the Union as well.
Via labor unions, workers are united, making room for the voices of individual workers to be heard and made a goal of the union, probably.
Unionized workers commonly elect representatives to bring concerns of their members to the union’s attention.
Benefits of Labour Union
These are the benefits derived from being a member of a labor union, inclusive is that you become one of the highest-paid union workers.
The benefits include:
1. Collective Bargaining
Collective bargaining is among the reasons why you should become a union member and is the heart and soul of the labor union.
This occurs when a group of individuals, such as the workforce at a company, comes together to increase its negotiating power.
For instance, a single worker might see the need to implement a certain new safety measure in his factory, but he might have limited power to have the company oblige to his request of installing the new measure.
If the need for the new measure is related to the entire workforce, they can come together to pressure the company to install it and with that the probability of the company complying with the request is high.
Labor unions band workers together, making room for the voices of individual workers to be heard and possibly made into a goal of the union.
2. Higher Wages
Among the top benefits of being a union, worker is that you are placed at a better salary (higher wages) above what’s obtainable for non-union counterparts.
The earnings of union workers are about 20 percent more in terms of wages (excluding benefits) compared to other individuals in similar jobs that aren’t supported by a union and they are also more likely to enjoy consistent pay raises on a regular basis.
This is obtainable due to collective bargaining between the trade union (on behalf of the employees) and the employer that results in an agreement between the two parties set out clear terms regarding pay and wages.
For non-union workers, there can be a fixed wage by the employer without any formal bargaining process or input from the employee.
3. Better Benefits
On average, workers who are members of a union are more likely to enjoy better benefits compared to non-union employees. These better benefits include health, retirement accounts, and paid sick leave.
The record from the U.S. Department of Labor has it that 77 percent of union workers get pensions (guaranteed continued payments) after their retirement from the job, compared to only 20 percent of non-union workers.
Again, representatives of a union work out these details as a part of the collective bargaining agreement with the employer.
4. Union Representatives
One of the reasons why you should be a union worker is that union representatives work on your behalf peradventure there is any personal issue that you have with your employer.
Non-union employees, have to reach out to the company’s human resources department in such cases for assistance. But, it’s important to keep in mind that the department is part of the company and might have little or nothing to do.
To resolve the issue, a union representative will initiate a meeting between you and the employer and talk things over.
Is A Union Job Worth It?
Yes, a union job is worth it. Union workers earn better wages and benefits than workers who aren’t union members.
They are given the power to negotiate for more favorable working conditions and other benefits through collective bargaining through which the negotiating power of workers is increased.
Do Union Workers Make Good Money?
Yes, union workers make good money.
Union workers make good money because of the power of unionism.
Union workers get about 20 percent more in terms of wages (excluding benefits) compared to other individuals in similar jobs that aren’t supported by a union and they are also more likely to enjoy consistent pay raises regularly.
How Much Do Union Workers Make?
According to reports by BLS in 2019, on average, union workers earned approximately $1,095 weekly, while non-union workers earned closer to $892. Quite a huge gap, right?
Union workers are known for earning higher union wages compared to what non-union workers earn.
How To Become A Union Worker
To get a union job is the same as becoming a union worker.
Many individuals are after getting union jobs for the security they provide among many other benefits.
To become a union worker, you are to follow these steps:
- Find a local labor union
- Sign up for an apprenticeship program
- Check job boards
- Identity with a trade union in your industry.
- Visit the Union Jobs website
1. Find a local labor union
To find a local labor union in America, you can find one on the website of the American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organization (AFL-CIO).
Your local labor union will provide guidance to employers and their websites with job postings. It’s advisable to reach out to union officials for assistance.
Such local labor websites also have the option to request that a union organizer contact you to help.
2. Sign up for an apprenticeship program
Why do you need to sign up for an apprenticeship program? As one who wants to become a union worker, having experience and training in some trades will make you rightly positioned to be hired by many employers
Your apprenticeship program has the ability to connect you with unions in the industry or employers who are unionized and are looking to hire skilled professionals.
There are a number of apprenticeship programs you can find. To do that visit https://www.apprenticeship.gov/ for available apprenticeship opportunities near you.
3. Check job boards
While hunting for a union job, make sure to include union language in your search to enable you to find job opportunities at employers that are affiliated with a union.
Some of these employers can come up with job listings to capture information about their affiliated union to enable job seekers to have access to the details beforehand.
Aside from the aforementioned ways, you can also apply for jobs on an employer’s website. You can visit the website of some places you want to work in to find out whether they belong to a union.
If that is the case, they would most likely, have information well displayed and you can apply to become an employee there.
4. Connect with a union in your industry
There are a number of unions that exist for certain industries and you can find them by performing an alike search.
Take on an option exploration and reach out to the unions to find out whether they have any resources for you or insight into which of their affiliated companies are taking people.
Highest Paid Union Workers
The Wealth Circle (TWC) brings to you the list of 25 highest-paid union workers.
National average salary: $17,192 per year
Actors and actresses are among the highest-paid union workers and are professionals who convey the emotions, behaviors, and mannerisms of other individuals in creative settings.
They work in film, television, theater, and other productions.
Actors and actresses are known for having an understanding of human emotions with which they excite people, make them laugh, and elicit other strong emotions from their audience.
Again, they are known for having a union that makes for sought-after achievement.
2. High School Teacher
Average salary: $48,736 per year
Primary duties: High school teachers are otherwise known as secondary school teachers
Part of their responsibility is to prepare lessons, map out assignments, and grade students’ work.
Among the training that high school teachers receive is in differentiation techniques, instruction delivery, and behavior management.
In addition to the responsibilities of high school teachers are offering academic support and advancement opportunities for their students.
Median annual wage: $91,010
The said median annual wage is according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
According to BLS too, there is a projection that the engineering field will have employment growth of about 140,000 new jobs over the next decade.
The bottom line about being an engineer is that it is well worth the time and effort it takes.
An Engineer uses math and science to solve different technical problems. The main duties of an engineer include:
- Coming up with new products for companies or individuals to use,
- Maintaining current products to enhance use and
- Designing new machines for the improvement of an organization’s efficiencies.
The national average salary of doctors in the United States: $175,632
The duties and responsibilities of a doctor are specific most times and vary by specialty.
Though this is the case, all doctors need to be able to perform the following duties:
- Symptom assessment
- Conditions diagnosis
- Treatment prescription and administration.
- Provide follow-up care to patients, refer them to other providers in times when such is required, and interpret their laboratory results.
- Work together with physician assistants, nurse practitioners, registered nurses, and other health professionals
- Prescribe medication
- Stay updated with medical technology and research.
The median annual wage for lawyers: $126,930.
Some of the duties of a lawyer include the following:
- Interpretation of laws, rulings, and regulations for individuals and businesses.
- Presentation and summarization of cases to judges and juries.
- Represent clients in court or before government agencies.
6. Marine Service Technician
National average salary: $41,920 per year
Marine service technicians are among the highest-paid union workers and their job responsibility is to maintain and repair a wide variety of boats and other water vessels.
Also, they ensure the safety of marine passengers through equipment inspection, ensuring that navigational tools the functionality, and making any necessary repairs.
They do the following daily
- Diagnostic test-run
- Report writing
- Submission of findings
7. Airline Manager
National average salary: $42,663 per year
Primary duties: An airline manager is a professional who works in the maintenance department of a commercial airline.
Their job responsibility is to oversee the operations and communications needed for ensuring safe air travel.
Airline managers are known for the following:
- Regular test equipment
- Engagement in conversations with airline personnel
- Proper documentation and
- Overseeing maintenance repairs and installations.
National average salary: $44,313 per year
Primary duties: Firefighters are individuals in a community who respond to fire-related emergencies.
They drive fire trucks and other emergency vehicles, but more expressly, they extinguish fires in homes, commercial buildings, cars, or nature.
The training they receive is such that it equips them to rescue people and animals from emergency situations like a car accident.
9. Customer Service Representatives
National average salary: $46,289 per year
Primary duties: Customer service representatives are individuals hired by a company for the purpose of interacting with clients and companies and are among the highest-paid union workers.
On a regular note, they process orders, deliver billing statements, collect payments, respond to customer complaints and answer questions relating to products and delivery.
10. Plumbing Technician
National average salary: $47,820 per year
Primary duties: Plumbing technicians, more usually known as plumbers, are skilled laborers who install, maintain, and repair pipes and other materials used for carrying water or sewage.
This set of union workers regularly coordinates with contractors, electricians, and other professionals in the construction industry.
11. Police Officer
National average salary: $54,074 per year
Primary duties: A police officer is a law enforcement employee and is among the highest-paid union workers.
They work in teams to secure communities. They patrol areas, conduct investigations, respond to service calls, and enforce federal and state.
On a regular note they do the following: observe, meditate, gather evidence, and report their findings.
12. Truck Driver Trainer
National average salary: $51,409 per year
Primary duties: The job responsibility of a truck driver trainer is to deliver instruction to people who want to become professional truck drivers.
They do the following:
- study state guidelines,
- administer practice tests,
- conduct practice driving sessions and
- complete forms.
13. Nuclear Power Reactor Operator
National average salary: $59,682 per year
Primary duties: The operators of a Nuclear-power reactor are people who manage the control systems for nuclear reactors.
Their daily responsibilities include
- dispatch of orders,
- performance of maintenance checks and
- submission of reports.
National average salary: $62,380 per year
Primary duties: Nurses are among the highest-paid union workers and are healthcare professionals who work in various settings to provide care to patients.
The duties that a nurse performs regularly include;
- vital checks,
- Administration of medicine
- performance of patient screenings.
- Recording of diligent notes,
- Report writing and
- Relating treatment plans to patients and their advocates.
15. Nurse Practitioner
National average salary: $73,300 per year according to the Bureau of Labor and statistics
Primary duties: Nurse practitioners are among the highest paid union workers and are health care professionals who work in various settings to provide healthcare for patients.
They assess and diagnose patients alongside doctors and other medical professionals
You asked the difference between a nurse and a nurse practitioner, right?
Nurse practitioners differ from registered nurses with advanced training and responsibility as the minimum educational requirement for a nurse practitioner is a master’s degree.
16. Construction Managers
National average salary: $80,303 per year
Primary duties: A construction manager is a skilled laborer who is in charge of overseeing the operations relating to construction sites.
They organize and plan project and site details, and are the head of crew members and other personnel.
The duties of construction managers include the following:
- drafting plans,
- ensuring site and crew member safety and managing client needs.
- delegation of responsibilities and
- ensuring that Projects are to completion on time and under budget.
National average salary: $74,420 per year according to the Bureau of Labor and statistics
Primary duties: Producers are creative professionals who are famous for their creativity. They work in film, theater, or television.
The duties of producers include
- overseeing film production and assist
- assisting directors and writers in the development of an acting project.
- scripts review, budgets analysis, talent procurement and notes taking.
18. Machine Parts Process Lead
National average salary: $77,988 per year
Primary duties: A machine parts process lead is among the highest-paid union workers and is a job involving the manufacturing process.
Machine parts process leads regularly perform quality control checks and communicate with assembly workers and machine operators.
19. Powerplant Operators
National average salary: $87,140 per year
Primary duties: Power plant operators are individuals who work with machines and equipment in power-generating plants.
These powerplant operators control systems and monitor boilers, generators, and turbines.
On a daily basis, the responsibilities of a powerplant operator include running safety checks, cleaning equipment, and submitting reports or logs.
20. Film or Television Director
National average salary: $96,050 per year
Primary duties: A television or film director is an individual who is in charge of overseeing all aspects of transforming a script or concept into a fully realized production for film, television, commercials, music videos, and beyond.
Via the use of creative vision, industry knowledge, and strong leadership skills, the film or television director coordinates all aspects of production.
The production aspects include the following:
- finalizing scripting,
- casting and locations,
- directing the camera and acting on location,
- overseeing sound and video editing in post-production.
21. Electric Project Manager
National average salary: $83,890 per year
Primary duties: Electric project managers are among the highest-paid union workers and professionals who work on construction sites.
The duties of an electric project manager include
- Preparation of reports,
- Presentation of documents
- Estimation and forecast of schedules, project costs, and overall performance.
FAQs on Highest Paid Union Workers
According to the BLS 2019 reports, on average, union workers earned roughly $1,095 weekly, while nonunion workers earned about $892.
Unions may organize the following section of workers:
craft unionism: particular section of skilled workers
general unionism: this comprises a number of workers from different trades.
industrial unionism: all workers within a particular industry
These duties of a trade union may include the following:
negotiation of wages, work rules, occupational health and safety standards for workers
increasing co-operation and well-being among workers
securing facilities for workers
establishing avenues for workers and employers to meet up.
provision of Labor Welfare
The agreements negotiated by a union are binding on the following:
rank and file members,
the employer and
other non-members workers, in some cases.
A union job is a job where an individual is a part of a labor union with other workers who are members of the Union as well. Unions provide employees with support for their work conditions, benefits, wages, etc.
Trade union jobs are among the sought-after jobs in the world and present a lot of appealing benefits. So, you would do yourself good by getting rightly positioned to get a trade union job.