Why Work Union

Why Work Union

Advantages of being a union carpenter generally means higher pay, regular raises, better fringe benefits and a collective bargaining agreement that spells out terms and conditions on the job. Members have access to tuition-free training and upgraded classes that happen on-the-job and in our training centers floors, assistance with finding work, professional development and leadership training, and a say in contracts and working conditions.

Strength in Numbers

Belonging to a union means you are not alone if your boss wants to fire you, pays you late, refuses to pay you overtime, unilaterally cuts your pay or plays favorites. You are not on your own if your boss tries to deny you the workers’ compensation and unemployment insurance you have earned.

The Regional Council has a sophisticated job referral system to help you find work with various contractors, so you don’t have to be tied to the peaks and valleys of one company’s fortunes. If times are tough, you can even work for union contractors anywhere in the United States without losing benefit coverage or having to start from scratch.

Union Wages

Strength in numbers gives North Central States the ability to participate in collective bargaining, Union construction workers earn, on average, 60 percent more than nonunion workers doing the same kinds of jobs, according to the federal government.

What does that mean in real dollars? Union construction workers earn an average of $376 more each week than nonunion construction workers. That’s $9.40 more an hour. To put it another way, the typical nonunion construction worker must be on the clock almost 13 hours a day to earn what the typical union construction worker earns in 8 hours.

Union Fringe Benefits

In addition to higher wages, union workers typically have more benefits and typically pay less out of pocket. In our region, most members have family health insurance, prescription drug coverage, dental insurance, vision coverage, a pension, disability pay, a death benefit and a savings plan.

Union and Nonunion Pay

George I. Long is an economist in the Division of Compensation Data Analysis and Planning, Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Differences between union and nonunion

Union Wages

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

In December 2011, private industry union workers earned more per hour than their nonunion counterparts in all major occupational groups except management, professional, and related occupations.

Union wages chart


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Interested in becoming a member of North Central States Regional Council of Carpenters, review the steps to becoming a member.

If you have questions further questions, please submit the contact form below.

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Although North Central States Regional Council of Carpenters does not hire or make hiring decisions on behalf of its partner employers, it is the policy of the North Central States Regional Council of Carpenters to provide equal employment opportunity (EEO) to all persons regardless of age, color, national origin, citizenship status, physical or mental disability, race, religion, creed, gender, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and/or expression, genetic information, marital status, status with regard to public assistance, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state or local law. Employers utilizing information collected on this website must comply with NCSRCC’s EEO policy or maintain an equivalent EEO policy as a term and condition of use of this site.

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