Earnings in the chemical industry are higher than average. The weekly earnings for all production workers in chemical manufacturing averaged $755 in 2002, compared with $619 in all manufacturing industries and $506 throughout private industry. This was due, in part, to the chemical industry’s practice of assigning more overtime and weekend work, which commands higher hourly rates.
Wages of workers in the chemical industry vary according to occupation, the specific industry segment, and the size of the production plant.
The principal unions representing chemical workers are the PACE (Paper, Allied-Industrial, Chemical, and Energy Workers) International Union and the International Chemical Workers Union. In 2002, almost 14 percent of chemical manufacturing workers were union members or covered by union contracts, compared with about 15 percent of all workers.