• Unions lost 771,000 members in 2009. The proportion of all wage and salary workers belonging to a labor union held roughly steady, however, at 12.3 percent. In the private sector, the percentage of workers who were union members fell to 7.2 percent in 2009, compared to 7.6 percent in 2008. By contrast, the overall percentage of government workers who were union members rose from 36.8 percent in 2008 to 37.4 percent in 2009. For the first time in 2009, a majority (52 percent) of all union members were employed in government.
  • Flight simulator technicians at Delta Air Lines are scheduled to vote in February on whether they wish to be represented by the International Association of Machinists. The vote will mark the first representation election to take place at Delta Air Lines following its merger with Northwest Airlines in 2008.
  • The United Food and Commercial Workers has withdrawn its petition to hold a union election for a group of beef plant workers including production, maintenance, shipping and receiving, plant clerical, groundskeeping, and warehouse employees at the National Beef plant in Dodge City, Kansas. The UFCW offered no explanation for the withdrawal other than to say that it was not the right time for an election at the plant.
  • Pilots of Cape Air Inc. voted 47-31 to return to the International Brotherhood of Teamsters. In May 2009, pilots voted 51-40 to replace the IBT with the independent Cape Air Pilots Association after long delays in negotiations for a first IBT contract. The rerun representation election became necessary, however, after the National Mediation Board overturned the election, finding that management had tainted the election by supporting the independent union over the IBT.
  • Registered nurses at MountainView Hospital in Las Vegas voted 240-152 for representation by the California Nurses Association/National Nurses Organizing Committee. In negotiations for the first contract, the union announced that it intends to bargain for minimum nurse-patient ratios, wage increases, and employee benefits that include a defined benefit pension plan. MountainView’s election marks the first election since the formation of the National Nurses United.
  • More than 2,000 registered nurses, psych-social professionals, and other professional employees at Kaiser Permanente hospitals and clinics in Southern California have overwhelmingly voted to switch representation from the United Healthcare Workers-West local of the Service Employees International Union to the National Union of Healthcare Workers. According to the NUHW, it has organized 3,357 new members, winning seven out of nine elections against SEIU in the past year.