Los Angeles Times: “Cannabis workers, once facing legal peril, get the California seal of approval”

In Sunday’s Los Angeles Times, Robin Abcarian reported on the leadership role of cannabis workers in professionalizing the cannabis industry through their union, the United Food and Commercial Workers’ (UFCW).

As California leaders come closer to solidifying a regulatory path for recreational cannabis under Prop. 64, the Times’ story underscores how a professional workforce with core union worker protections are crucial to a safe, competitive marketplace for consumers and good jobs for communities.

  • Training:  The UFCW’s apprenticeship program provides budtenders “training — on safety, packaging, patient verification and best business practices.”
  • Diversity: “apprenticeships will help level the playing field for the folks who have been penalized the most by the failed war on drugs. ‘This will be an opportunity for people of color to really thrive, because it’s the skills that will get you there, not your gender or color,’” UFCW’s Jeff Ferro told the times.
  • Good jobs: “I reached out to the union because I wanted to solidify my staff wages and benefits,” dispensary owner David Spradling said.  Spralding’s “employees start at $13 an hour and get bumped to $15 after 90 days. They receive health benefits, and will eventually participate in the UFCW’s pension plan as well.”

Read more:

*photo: Shayna Schonauer, 27, is California’s first-ever state-certified cannabis pharmacy technician. (Robin Abcarian / Los Angeles Times)

International Workers’ Day Actions

May 1st is International Workers’ Day also known as May Day.

May Day has traditionally served to celebrate the contributions of working people and raise the voices of immigrant communities. This year, it will also serve to further motivate, educate, and activate workers, and supporters. It will serve to fight regressive politics in our power institutions.

Let’s gear up to honor & celebrate May Day 2017: International Workers’ Day! Find an action near you:

Southern California

Los Angeles

The march will start at MacArthur Park, west of Downtown Los Angeles, at 11 a.m. and conclude in front of City Hall with a rally. For more information visit:  http://ufcw770.org/Resist

Orange County

Join the Orange County Labor Federation on International Worker’s Day for a march and rally. Stand UNITED with your union brothers and sisters as we continue to fight for equality, fairness, respect and dignity for all workers.

Event Schedule:
(Meet at St. Boniface Catholic Church – 120 N Janss St, Anaheim, CA 92805)
(Pearson Park)

For more information, call 714.385.1534


San Diego Workers and Community Resist!/Trabajadores y Communidad Resisten!

May 1 @ 3:00 pm

Union del Barrio, SEIU-USWW workers, and the Justice Can’t Coalition alongside several community organizations and labor unions are planning a large-scale rally and march that will start at the Federal Building in downtown San Diego and commence in Chicano Park.  Students, Immigrants, Workers, and Communities will unite in this day without ALL of US!

This is a call to all working people and communities/Este Un llamada para toda la gente trabajadora y todos las comunidades: Join in the streets/Unase a nosotros en las calles!

Date: May 1

Time: 3:00 pm – 9:00 pm

Federal Building
880 Front St.
San Diego, CA 92101

Northern California

May Day San Francisco

Monday, MAY 1, 2017

Join the Rally @ Justin Herman Plaza @ 11 AM then March on Market St. to Civic Center Plaza.



Oakland: International Workers’ Day General Strike and March

March begins at 3 pm at Fruitvale Plaza, Ends at San Antonio Park

Fruitvale Plaza Address:

3526 San Leandro St

Oakland, CA 94601

San Jose: South Bay May Day

Join thousands of workers across the country and the world as we take to the streets to SHUT IT DOWN! No Work! No School! No Shopping!

San Jose will march from the Mexican Heritage Plaza/School of Arts and Culture to the Arena Gardens (Santa Clara St./ Autumn St.) along Alum Rock Ave./Santa Clara St.

Program begins at 1:00
Marching at 3:00

Sacramento: May Day International Workers’ Day March

Join workers and activists on May 1st to march for International Workers’ Day! The march will begin at 10 am at South Side Park and end with a rally at the West Steps of the Capitol. Email maydaysacramento@gmail.com for more information.

Salinas May Day March

10:00 am – 12:00 pm

Cesar Chavez Park
250 N. Madeira Ave
Salinas, CA 93905

Let’s Top 2016 World Record Record for ‘Stamp Out Hunger’ Food Drive

We know better than anyone how hard UFCW members work to put food on the table for America’s families – and our union family also believes that no hardworking man or woman should struggle alone. Which is why we work hard for those in need, supporting our brothers and sisters at the National Association of Letter Carriers (NALC) in their “Stamp Out Hunger” food drive.

This year is the 25th anniversary of the food drive, and we want to make this a year for the history books. We hope to top last year’s Guinness World Record—80 million pounds of food collected for the largest single day food drive in world history. Together, we know we can do it, one bag at a time.

Here’s how:

  1. FILL A BAG with non-perishable food items. (See list below.)
  2. TAKE A PIC AND POST IT! Please Tweet it or put it on Facebook with the hashtag #StampOutHunger – and please tag @UFCW and @NALC.
  3. PUT OUT YOUR BAG on May 13th before your letter carrier’s normal pick-up time. 

That’s it! It’s so easy – please help us Stamp Out Hunger and put food on shelves in our local food banks.

What to Put in Your Bag 

Fill your paper bag with*:

  • Cereal
  • Pasta
  • Pasta or spaghetti sauce
  • Rice
  • Canned fruits and veggies
  • Canned meals (soup, chili, pasta)
  • 100% juice
  • Peanut butter
  • Macaroni and cheese
  • Canned protein (chicken, tuna, turkey)
  • Beans
  • Oatmeal

*NOTE: DO NOT put in frozen food, homemade food, expired food, or home canned items – or anything in glass containers.