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Local 338 Members Working in New York’s Cannabis Industry

Local 338 RWDSU/UFCW is proud to represent workers across New York State who work across the cannabis industry’s entire supply chain, including cultivation, manufacturing and processing, distribution, and in dispensaries. Local 338 cannabis members work at Be., The Botanist, Sunnyside, Curaleaf, Rise Cannabis, MedMen, Verilife, and Vireo Health. Our members are proud to work in the cannabis industry and are incredibly passionate about their work – putting patients and consumers at the forefront from seed to sale.

Since New York’s medical cannabis program officially launched in 2015, Local 338 has been successfully engaged in organizing efforts to ensure that the jobs in this new industry set a standard for what cannabis careers can and should be, by providing family sustaining wages and benefits. We have negotiated union contracts that provide our members in the cannabis industry with guaranteed wage increases, full-time guarantees, paid time off, premium healthcare benefits (paid for by the employer) for workers and their families, access to retirement savings and on-the-job training, amongst other invaluable workplace protections.

We recognize that most New Yorkers who will be entering the cannabis industry – both in medical and adult use – as workers and that’s why we believe in good cannabis jobs and careers. It is essential that union contracts and the high road employment that we’ve helped to create are open and accessible to all, particularly to communities most impacted by the prohibition of cannabis.
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Joe
Colon

The Botanist
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Katie
Serdula

Curaleaf
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Wasontiiosta
George

MedMen
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Karly
Shanahan

PharmaCann
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James
O'Connor

Sunnyside
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Alon
Tov

Vireo Health

Hear from Workers in New York’s Cannabis Industry About Why They Joined Local 338


Check out this recent report by the Economic Policy Institute highlighting the union difference in the cannabis industry for workers:
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Our History Advocating for New York’s Cannabis Laws

To better understand the needs and issues of the cannabis industry and its workforce, representatives from Local 338 have been working with leaders, scientists, advocates, and workers from across the cannabis industry since before the passage of the Compassionate Care Act in 2014. We helped craft and advocate for the Compassionate Care Act to serve New York’s cannabis patients and their families, and along the way have positioned ourselves as a partner for New York’s cannabis workers.

Local 338 spent the years following the passage of the Compassionate Care Act advocating to expand patient access to the medical cannabis program and pushing for the full legalization of adult-use cannabis, including critical policies and programs that support social and economic justice. With the help of our member activists working in the cannabis industry, who spent time in Albany speaking directly with lawmakers about the opportunities cannabis legalization would bring to New Yorkers, the New York State Legislature passed the Marijuana Regulation and Taxation (Act) (MRTA) on March 30, 2021. We now look forward to working with New York State and the Office of Cannabis Management to develop the regulations needed to ensure the creation of thousands of quality union cannabis jobs and maximize social equity programs in our state.
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The MRTA – New York’s cannabis law - created the framework for New York’s cannabis industry and includes clear protections for working people, with opportunities for communities to thrive whether they want to enter it as a worker or entrepreneur. When we fought for this legislation, we knew that it had to serve all communities across New York, which is why we helped secure a social equity and community reinvestment fund and criminal justice reforms for workers by sealing and expunging conviction histories. New York’s cannabis industry is one that will benefit all working people, regardless of their background.


In addition to advocating for the legalization of adult-use cannabis and creating equity through job opportunities, we have been focusing on workforce development in the cannabis industry. Our goal is to ensure new workers in the industry are well-trained and first-time cannabis business owners have the resources they need to succeed and grow. To learn more about this and our partners in this important work, visit: cannabisworkforce.org

Interested in becoming a UNION cannabis worker?

Local 338 has played a key role in setting the standard for jobs in this emerging industry for what cannabis careers can and should be. Our collective bargaining agreements provide our members with family-sustaining wages and benefits, guaranteed wage increases, full-time guarantees, paid time off, premium healthcare benefits (which are paid for by the employer) for workers and their families, access to retirement savings and on-the-job training, amongst other invaluable workplace protections.

All workers in New York’s cannabis industry should be given the same benefits and protections as the ones we secure in our contracts—however, it is not guaranteed in nonunion workplaces. Hundreds of New York’s cannabis workers have come together to make positive change at their workplace – increased wages and benefits (paid time off, affordable healthcare, retirement savings), job protections and a voice on the job. Their collective action has not only made a difference in their lives but also the future of jobs in the cannabis industry.

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Samia Ali

MedMen
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Maelisa Rivera

CuraLeaf
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Devin Friedland

CuraLeaf
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Zeion Porter

CuraLeaf
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Sara Liles

Pharmacann
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Jamel Gibbs

The Botanist
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Murugan Naidu

MedMen
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Corey Smith

MedMen

Shop Union from Seed to Sale!

Local 338 is proud to represent New York’s cannabis workers at the following companies:
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We are currently in contract negotiations on behalf of the workers at:
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CONTACT US

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Have questions about Local 338, joining a union or the cannabis industry?

Send us a note at cannabisrep@local338.org or (516) 591-9349
If you’re a prospective cannabis licensee in New York State and are interested in learning more about labor peace agreements or how to secure one, visit cannabislpa.com or email us at cannabislpa@local338.org
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© 2022 Local 338 RWDSU/UFCW

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