Silencing Critics

sf weeklyA union boss wants the State of California to prohibit criticism of unions by marijuana business owners.

[Jim] Araby [executive director of UFCW’s Western States Council] is involved in the push to pass a bill that would, for the first time, regulate California’s cannabis industry at the state level. He wants to make sure that any regulations passed are friendly to labor. “For us,” Araby says at his one-man office in an Art Deco building in downtown Oakland, “two things need to be in every bill.” Those things are ensuring that dispensary owners allow union organizers into their shops and don’t speak ill of labor, and instituting a workplace training program similar to the ones in New York and Minnesota…

Just who would administer a cannabis apprenticeship program, however, isn’t clear. This will be a point of contention for the rest of the summer. The union, predictably, wants it to be the union. The industry, just as predictably, believes it has a good handle on things…

Meanwhile, UFCW is unapologetic about using the Legislature to achieve its ends.

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