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UFCW union curaleaf

The UFCW Local 360 union announced workers at the Multi-State Operator (MSO) Curaleaf’s Edgewater dispensary voted to join them.

The Massachusetts-based cannabis corporation Curaleaf’s location in Edgewater in Burlington County originally served only medical cannabis patients. It now makes money selling adult-use cannabis as well.

“Wherever cannabis is legalized, UFCW is committed to building a successful, responsible industry. A whole new generation of workers is discovering that labor unions play a critical role in balancing the needs of employees, communities, and employers, and they want in,” said Hugh Giordano, UFCW Local 360 director of organizing.

“When we take the recent decision to pardon people convicted of ‘simple possession’ into account, it’s clear that the mission of protecting cannabis workers in their workplaces and establishing a fair and equitable industry that supports family-sustaining jobs is making serious progress,” he added.

Curaleaf describes itself as a company of leaders, community members, and responsible employers. According to Giordano, with the decision by Curaleaf’s Edgewater workers to join the UFCW Local 360, those claims are made more tangible.

The MSO Curaleaf operates 134 dispensaries and 26 cultivation sites in 22 states.

Building the New Jersey Cannabis Industry with the UFCW

A Labor Peace Agreement (LPA) whereby a company will allow its workers to form a union without interference is required for cannabis companies as part of the adult-use cannabis legalization referendum implementation law CREAMMA. However, Giordano presents working with the UFCW as a partnership. He has advocated before numerous town councils and cannabis boards across New Jersey, advocating for an inclusive industry and companies that have signed an LPA. While based in South Jersey, he frequently travels across the state.

“Wherever cannabis is legalized, UFCW is committed to building a successful, responsible industry,” said UFCW Local 360 President Sam Ferraino, Jr. “Every vote to unionize is workers saying they want to be part of something special, and they are in it for the long-haul. The most successful employers will be those that hear this message and embrace its implications.”

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Ferraino is also President of the South Jersey AFL-CIO Central Labor Council, a position formerly held by South Jersey Congressman Donald Norcross (D-NJ-1). Thus, they have a great deal of influence.

The UFCW (United Food and Commercial Workers) International Union represents over 1.3 million hardworking families across the United States and Canada. These members work in essential industries such as Retail, Warehousing, Manufacturing, Healthcare, Transportation, the Public Sector, and Cannabis.

Unique to the cannabis industry, the UFCW union is respected in the New Jersey cannabis industry and frequently works with industry partners.

(Heady NJ is partnering with the UFCW union to host the Working in South Jersey Cannabis Gathering on January 21st! Early bird tickets are still available!)

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