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How much does a laborer make?

January 23, 2023 · 5 min read

The salary of a laborer can vary depending on factors such as location, experience, and the specific trade or craft in which they are working.

On average, a laborer in the United States can expect to earn around $15 - $25 per hour. Some states with a higher cost of living like California, New York, and Massachusetts, tend to pay higher wages for laborers.

Skilled laborers such as electricians, plumbers, and carpenters, who have completed apprenticeships or vocational training and have specialized skills, can earn higher wages, with median hourly wages between $20 and $30.

It's important to note that wages can also vary depending on the industry or sector in which the laborer is working, whether it is a union or non-union job, and whether the job is full-time or part-time. Some construction projects or employers may offer benefits such as health insurance, retirement plans, and paid time off, which can add to the overall compensation package.

There are many companies that employ laborers and pay competitive wages. Some of the top companies that pay well for laborers include:

  • Bechtel Corporation: A global engineering, construction, and project management company that employs laborers in a variety of fields, such as infrastructure, mining, and oil and gas.

  • Fluor Corporation: A global engineering and construction company that specializes in the design, construction, and maintenance of industrial facilities.

  • AECOM: A multinational engineering company that provides a wide range of services, including planning, consulting, design, construction, and management.

  • KBR: A global engineering, construction, and services company that works in a variety of industries, including oil and gas, infrastructure, and government services.

  • CH2M: A global engineering, construction, and program management company that specializes in infrastructure projects, including water and wastewater treatment, transportation, and energy.

  • Turner Construction: A construction management and general contracting company that specializes in the construction of commercial, institutional and industrial buildings.

  • Gilbane Building Company: A construction company that specializes in the construction of commercial, institutional, and industrial buildings.

  • Skanska: A construction and development company that specializes in building and infrastructure projects.


Bonuses are a form of additional compensation that can be given to employees in addition to their regular wages or salary. The availability and amount of bonuses can vary depending on the company and the specific job.

In the construction and trade industries, where many laborers are employed, bonuses may be offered for meeting certain performance or productivity goals, or for working on particularly challenging or high-profile projects. Some companies may also offer bonuses for safety performance or for meeting project deadlines.

Not all companies offer bonuses to their laborers, and the availability of bonuses can depend on a variety of factors such as company size, industry, and the specific job. Some companies may offer bonuses as a standard part of the compensation package, while others may only offer bonuses on an occasional or discretionary basis.

If you are interested in a job as a laborer and you would like to know more about the bonuses, you should check the company's website or ask for that information during the interview process.

Some famous figures in laboring

It is difficult to say who the most famous laborer is, as fame and notoriety can be subjective and can vary depending on the context. However, there are many laborers throughout history who have made significant contributions to their fields and have become well-known figures:

  1. Cesar Chavez: An American labor leader and civil rights activist who co-founded the National Farm Workers Association, which later became the United Farm Workers (UFW). He led many strikes and boycotts for the rights of farm workers and is considered one of the most important figures in the American labor movement.

  1. Samuel Gompers: An American labor leader and a key figure in the American labor movement. He was the founder and first President of the American Federation of Labor, one of the first federations of unions in the United States.

  1. Bob Dylan: An American singer-songwriter, artist and writer, who was also a labor organizer and civil rights activist during the 1960s, his songs were anthems for the civil rights and anti-war movements, and he continues to be an influential figure in popular music and culture.

  1. Mother Jones: An American labor leader, known as the "miners' angel" and "the most dangerous woman in America" for her activities on behalf of mine workers and the labor movement, she organized workers and led strikes, and she was also a prominent figure in the American socialist movement.

  1. Walter Reuther: An American labor leader, who led the United Automobile Workers (UAW) union and was a major figure in the American labor movement, he was known for his strong support of civil rights, and for his efforts to improve the lives of working people through collective bargaining and political action.

Nowadays people can make themselves known thanks to social media. TikTok is a popular social media platform that allows users to create and share short videos. Many people use TikTok to share videos of themselves doing various activities, including their jobs. 

There is a variety of content related to different skilled trades and crafts, from construction, welding, plumbing, carpentry, and more. You can easily find it under the hashtags #skilledtrades #laborer #construction #welding #plumbing #carpentry, etc. 

This can be a great way for them to show their skills and attract new clients or employers. Also, it can help to share safety tips and information about this field of work.


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