Labour union membership falls; proportion of women rises

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No image availableNL Times

The number of people belonging to a labor union in the Netherlands has declined for the fifth year in a row. At the end of March this year a total of 1.7 million people belonged to a union, 55 thousand less than in March 2014 and at the lowest level since 1991.

This is according to figures released by Statistics Netherlands on Tuesday.

Statistics Netherlands noted a shift in the proportion of men and women who are members of a labor union. In 1991 19 percent of the 1.7 million union members were women. This year 37 percent of about the same total of union members are female.

The number of union members between the ages of 25 and 45 years decreased the most compared to last year with a decrease of 32 thousand members. The union members between the ages of 45 and 65 years decreased with 25 thousand. The number of union members below the age of 25 stayed about the same, and those above the age of 65 increases slightly.

Of the three trade union confederations in the Netherlands, only FNV had a member loss over the past year. The number of CNV members remained virtually unchanged. VCP, formerly MHP, saw an increase in members, mainly due to some previously unconnected associations joining the confederation.