Labor Unions look to organize Pot Workers in California

Posted by Sagar Satapathy on December 26, 2017.

Labor Unions are looking to organize all the thousands of workers involved in marijuana production as it becomes legal in California on January 1.

Major labor organizations including the United Farm Workers, Teamsters and United Food and Commercial Workers are looking to bring together thousands of potential workers involved in cannabis production.

Experts state that the recreational pot business in California could result in the employment of at least 100,000 workers involved in harvesting and trimming the plants, extracting ingredients to put in liquids and edibles, and driving it to stores and front doors.

While other states have organized pot workers, California is expected to be friendly towards labor unions. California has one of USA’s highest minimum wages and the largest number of unionized workers across industries.

“I’m always down to listen to what could be a good deal for me and my family,” said Thomas Grier, 44, who has not been contacted by any unions so far. Though he doesn’t want to pay union dues for sorting workplace disputes, he has not ruled out on the idea of joining.

Medical pot and black market accounts for about $22 billion in California. California has been the first state to approve medical cannabis way back in 1996.

The process of legalization of recreational pot began last year when California voters approved Proposition 64, which allows recreational pot sales to adults. Medical marijuana in the state has been legal for the last two decades.

California will allow people only 21 and above to legally possess up to an ounce of the drug and grow six plants at home. To sell the drug in the state, businesses must acquire both local permit and a state license.

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