Center for American Progress

RELEASE: How Labor Unions Help Reduce the Pay Gap for Disabled Workers 
Press Release

RELEASE: How Labor Unions Help Reduce the Pay Gap for Disabled Workers 

Washington, D.C. — Workers with disabilities are paid 66 cents for each dollar earned by those without a disability. A new Center for American Progress column examines how labor unions can reduce the pay gap for disabled workers and provides new analysis on the number of disabled workers in unions compared with nondisabled workers.

Unions help disabled workers overcome inequities in the workplace to help support themselves and their families. This analysis finds that in 2022, 9.4 percent of workers with disabilities were union members, just below the nationwide average of 10.1 percent of all workers. This column also reviews how unions have helped narrow the pay gap between workers with disabilities and those without. For example, nonunion workers with disabilities earn 13 percent less than similar workers without disabilities, whereas union members with disabilities earn only 3 percent less.

“Unions are helping close the gap between workers with disabilities and those without, all while ensuring workers with disabilities have the accommodations they need on the job,” said Aurelia Glass, research associate for Inclusive Economy and author of the column. “Union membership offers workers a route to the middle class, and disabled workers are no exception.”

Read the column: “How Labor Unions Help Reduce the Pay Gap for Disabled Workers” by Aurelia Glass

For more information on this topic or to speak with an expert, please contact Sarah Nadeau at snadeau@americanprogress.org.

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