Rising Number of Librarians Covered by Collective Bargaining Agreements

A Report from the 2010 Librarian Salary Survey supplemental questions

In addition to compensation data it offers in every Salary Survey: Librarian – Public and Academic, ALA-APA also collects and publishes supplemental data on different topics. The 2010 survey provides data on the number of library employees who are covered by collective bargaining agreements. The survey finds that, compared to coverage in 1997 and 2005, the number of librarians covered by collective bargaining agreements is on the rise.

The survey was sent in January 2010 to a sample of 957 public and 715 academic libraries, using a proportional sampling procedure. By March 12, 2010, usable responses had been received from 350 public libraries and 233 academic libraries for a total of 583, or 35 percent. This compares to a 33 percent response rate in 2009. In 2010, almost all staff (directors or Human Resource managers, primarily) responding on behalf of their libraries also completed the supplemental questions.

The first supplemental question asked respondents which of their library’s employees are covered by a collective bargaining agreement (CBA). Types of staff included librarians, other professional staff and support staff. Sixteen percent of responding libraries report that all librarians are covered by CBAs, compared to 13 percent in 2005. In 9.1 percent of responding libraries all other professional are covered (8 percent in 2005). All support staff in 14.4 percent of responding libraries are covered compared to 17 percent in 2005 (Table 1).

Table 1: Staff Covered by a Collective Bargaining Agreement-2010

All

Some

None

Total

% of Libraries

# of Libraries

% of Libraries

# of Libraries

% of Libraries

# of Libraries

% of Libraries

# of Libraries

Librarians

16.0%

92

10.3%

59

73.7%

424

100.0%

575

Other Professional Staff

9.1%

52

11.2%

64

79.8%

457

100.0%

573

Support Staff

14.4%

83

14.9%

86

70.7%

407

100.0%

576


The percentage of librarians and other professional staff covered partially or in total increased from 29.1 percent in 1997 to 35 percent in 2005, and again to 46.6 percent in 2010. (Please note that the 1997 survey combined “librarians” and “other professional staff” into one field in 1997.) The percentage of support staff covered partially or in total decreased from 29.5 percent in 1997 to 25 percent in 2005, but increased to 29.3 percent in 2010 (Table 2).

Table 2: Comparison of the percentage of respondents of all or some staff covered for 1997, 2005 & 2010

1997

2005

2010

Librarians & Other Professionals

29.1%

35%

46.6%

Support Staff

29.5%

25%

29.3%

*Libraries & Other Professionals were combined in 1997.

The percentage of libraries that report that all librarians and other professional staff are covered increased from 16.4 percent in 1997 to 21 percent in 2005, then to 25.1 percent in 2010. The percentage of libraries reporting that all support staff are covered decreased from 20.3 percent in 1997 to 17 percent in 2005 then to 14.4 percent in 2010. (Table 3)

Table 3: Comparison of the percentage of respondents of all staff covered for 1997, 2005 & 2010

1997

2005

2010

Librarians & Other Professionals

16.4%

21%

25.1

Support Staff

20.3%

17.0%

14.4


Two other reports are forthcoming in future issues of Library Worklife, one comparing coverage in public and academic libraries, and another showing compensation strategies used in libraries. This data will be collected again in 2015. We thank all those who responded on behalf of their library staff.