Self-Serving

sf weeklyThe UFCW lobbies local government to make it easier to unionize marijuana shops — and reward compliant crony capitalists.

[The UFCW organizer] sold dispensary operators on UFCW’s political clout, leverage that could be used to win them local approval to open. The union also worked city halls. When Oakland chose to expand the number of permitted dispensaries allowed in town from four to eight, UFCW ensured that when the “merit-based” permit applications were considered, union membership counted. (Of the four that were granted permits, only Magnolia Wellness was — and still is — organized.) A similar reward for union membership is in place in Berkeley, which will select one of eight applicants for an additional dispensary permit later this year.

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