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6310.0 - Employee Earnings, Benefits and Trade Union Membership, Australia, Aug 2006  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 03/04/2007   
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MEDIA RELEASE
April 3, 2007
Embargoed 11:30am (AEDT)
35/2007

Trade union membership down 6.6% over 12 months to August 2006: ABS


One in five employees (1.8 million people) were trade union members in relation to their main job in August 2006, according to figures released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

This is a fall of 6.6% from the 1.9 million members recorded in August 2005. The proportion of employees who were trade union members also decreased over this 12 month period, from 22% of employees to 20%.

Other findings on trade union membership at August 2006 included:
    • Full-time employees were more likely to be trade union members than part-time employees – 22% of full-time employees compared with 16% of part-time employees.
    • Public sector employees were also more likely to be trade union members than those in the private sector (43% and 15% respectively).
    • Male employees were more likely to be trade union members than female employees (21% and 19% respectively).
    • The occupation group with the highest proportion of employees who were trade union members was 'machinery operators and drivers' (35%).
    • The industries with the highest proportion of employees who were trade union members were 'electricity, gas, water and waste services' and 'education and training' (both 39%).
    • The state or territory with the highest proportion of employees who were trade union members was Tasmania (27%).

In August 2006, the mean weekly earnings of employees in all jobs was $862, an increase of $55 (6.8%) over the previous 12 months. Mean weekly earnings of employees in their main job was $851. Full-time employees earned on average $1,045 per week in their main job, compared with $388 for part-time employees. The mean weekly earnings for full-time male employees was $1,122 and for full-time female employees it was $908.

Almost three-quarters (73%) of employees had paid leave entitlements in August 2006 (i.e. were entitled to paid holiday leave and/or paid sick leave in their main job). The proportion of full-time employees with paid leave entitlements was 86%, compared with 43% of part-time employees. A higher proportion of male employees had paid leave entitlements than female employees (76% compared with 70%).

Further information can be found in Employee Earnings, Benefits and Trade Union Membership, Australia, August 2006 (cat. no. 6310.0).


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