News Story

More Jobs, Higher Pay Since Right-to-Work Passed in Michigan

Since its right-to-work law took effect, Michigan has experienced the nation's sixth-largest growth in the number of people working, adding 141,990 jobs from March 2013 through December 2014, according to the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics.

California saw the largest increase during that span, adding 603,174 jobs.

On a percentage basis, Michigan employment grew 3.3 percent, ranking 15th overall in the nation. North Dakota held the top spot, growing its workforce by 5.4 percent.

Michigan had 4,294,532 jobs in March of 2013, a number that increased to 4,436,522 in December of 2014.

The data on jobs comes from the monthly Current Population Survey (CPS), also known as the household survey.

Unions and their allies have criticized Gov. Rick Snyder for signing right-to-work into law, claiming it has not helped the state.

“Gov. Snyder can’t point to a single job that has been created by right-to-work since it’s been implemented,” said Lonnie Scott, executive director of Progress Michigan, in a press release.

However, James Hohman, assistant director of fiscal policy at the Mackinac Center for Public Policy, said not only has there been an increase in employment since right-to-work was passed in Michigan, but incomes in the state have grown.

Since right-to-work became effective, average weekly earnings increased 5.4 percent, faster than the national increase of 3.7 percent. Weekly wages were $773.60 in Michigan in March 2013 and rose to $815.71 in December 2014.

“Michigan’s economy is moving in the right direction and right-to-work continues to be a positive for the state,” Hohman said. “The extreme warnings from union partisans about the law have fallen by the wayside as Michigan adds more good-paying jobs.”

Michigan Capitol Confidential is the news source produced by the Mackinac Center for Public Policy. Michigan Capitol Confidential reports with a free-market news perspective.