More than 600,000 U.S. manufacturing workers earn less than $9.60 an hour, and 1.5 million — or one-fourth of all manufacturing workers — make $11.91 or less, according to an analysis released Friday.
The National Employment Law Project said manufacturing jobs — once considered the solid source of middle-class income — increasingly are paying wages that can barely support a family.
That, however, does not appear to be the case in Connecticut. The latest labor situation report from the state, released Thursday, states that the average hourly wage for manufacturing production workers in the state was $23.31 per hour in October, up from $22.84 in September and up nearly $2 an hour from last year.
The report said that for 30 years, from 1976 to 2006, U.S. manufacturing workers were paid a median wage that was above the U.S. pay median. That manufacturing advantage peaked in the mid 1980s.
By 2013, the median manufacturing wage was 7.7 percent lower than the median U.S. wage for all public and private sector workers, according to the Census Bureau’s survey data.
Wage concessions by unions, hiring of non-union workers, other pay cuts, and broader use of temporary workers have contributed to the declining pay scales, particularly in the automotive sector, the report said.
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