Under the leadership of outgoing president Bob King, the United Auto Workers have seen their rolls increase to 9,000 members in 2013, marking the fourth consecutive year of increases for the union.
Automotive News reports the current total membership holds at 391,415, up 2.3 percent from 2012. The increase can be attributed to recruitment drives at IC Bus, Flex-a-Gate and Faurecia, as well as casinos in Ohio and Las Vegas.
Annual membership last declined in 2009, when 355,191 remained from 2008’s 431,037 figure after the Detroit Three fended off declining sales and production amid the onset of the Great Recession. 2008’s figure, however, pales in comparison to the UAW’s peak roll of over 1.5 million members in 1979.
Despite the increase in membership, the UAW is still battling over plants in the south, including the high-profile fights in Chattanooga, Tenn. and Canton, Miss., the former of which resulted in a loss at the polls earlier this year.
Spending is also down for the union — $214 million in 2013 vs. $260 million in 2012 — due to falling dues and low membership. A dues increase is expected to be put to vote at the UAW’s June convention, where King’s replacement will also be elected.