The following analysis was completed by DPE based on an October 2016 attitudinal
survey of 1,004 professional and technical employees. Here, the responses of 522 professional women are separately analyzed and, in part, compared to male professionals.
Among the respondents: 56% were younger than 45; 22% were employed in the public
sector; 53% were employed in the private, for-profit sector; 65% were White; 30% identified as
conservative; and 37% identified as liberal. In their attitudes toward unions, women differed
from their male counterparts in a number of ways.
First, professional women were more likely than their male colleagues to support having
a union at work; working conditions may be one reason why. While a majority of women were
satisfied with their working conditions they reported lower rates of satisfaction than male
professionals and had a more pessimistic view of the situation facing their profession now and
into the future. In ranking specific aspects of their work, women reported lower levels of
satisfaction than men in 10 out of 11 categories.
Second, women expressed a greater need for fair and equal treatment at work and would
want a union that stood for fairness and equality. Thus, joining together to achieve fair and equal
treatment in the workplace is likely to be an effective organizing message for professional
Finally, professional women were more likely than their male colleagues to believe that
having a stronger voice in decisions on the job was a convincing reason to have a union where
they work. Professional women were more likely to see the effectiveness of having a union that
could amplify their collective voices in negotiations with management.
Additional data and analysis is available for DPE affiliated unions and their staff.
For more information, please contact Assistant to the President/Research Director Jennifer Dorning at 202-638-0320 ext. 114 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
For media inquiries, please contact Research and Communications Associate Katie Barrows at 202-638-0320 ext. 115 or email@example.com.