Last year was the second consecutive year union membership increased, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, after continual losses since the Department began collecting date in 1983.

Back then, union workers made up 20.1 percent of the labor force; last year, that was down to 12.1 percent. Today, the number of union workers has increased to 16. 1 million workers, representing 12.4 percent of the labor force.

The increase in union workers indicates employees' fears about the recession and their desire for wage and benefits protections, according to Workforce Management, and should also bolster the argument for the Employee Free Choice Act.

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