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Voting and Elections

UFCW voters matter for California.

California Candidates: District UFCW Endorsement State Senate SD 01 Pamela Swartz SD 03 Bill Dodd SD 05 Susan Eggman SD 07 Steve Glazer SD 09 Nancy Skinner SD 11 Scott Wiener SD 13 Josh Becker SD 15 Dave Cortese SD 17 John Laird SD 19 Monique Limón SD 21 Kipp Mueller SD 23 Abigail Medina […]
United States Representatives in Congress CA Labor Fed CA Dem Party UFCW CD 1 Audrey Denney (D) Audrey Denney (D) Audrey Denney (D) CD 2 Jared Huffman (D) Jared Huffman (D) Jared Huffman (D) CD 3 John Garamendi (D) John Garamendi (D) John Garamendi (D) CD 4 Refer to Exec Council Brynne Kennedy (D) No […]
The right to vote is a cornerstone of our country’s democracy. Ordinary men and women fought – and even died—to protect people’s right to vote without intimidation or obstruction. Voting is the opportunity for citizens to hold their elected officials accountable for their actions. The below listed labor-endorsed candidates’ promote advocacy for working families, commitment […]

Safe Prescriptions

UFCW is working to ensure pharmacists have the support to do their most important job: delivering the right medicines, in the right doses and protecting consumers against potentially deadly drug interactions.

Sacramento, CA – Today, the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Western States Council applauded the California State Board of Pharmacy’s election of Seung Oh as President. The Board of Pharmacy is tasked with protecting and promoting the health and safety of Californians by pursuing the highest quality of pharmacist’s care and the appropriate use […]
Sacramento, CA – After hearing from member pharmacists with the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Western States Council, the California Board of Pharmacy adopted regulations that reinforce standards set out by SB 1442 (Wiener), the No Pharmacist Left Alone Law. The nation-leading, pro-patient regulation, drafted in response to a petition by UFCW, will help […]
Board of Pharmacy to Enforce “No Pharmacist Left Alone” Law Sacramento, CA – After hearing from member pharmacists with the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Western States Council, the California Board of Pharmacy voted Wednesday to write regulations to help enforce SB 1442 (Wiener), the No Pharmacist Left Alone Law.  The vote on the […]

Cannabis

The UFCW is the only union representing cannabis workers in California. We are committed to building a successful industry that offers consumers access to safe products and local communities jobs with better wages and benefits.

Sacramento, CA – Today the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Western States Council applauded the Assembly Governmental Organization Committee for passing AB 1775 (Haney) to give local governments the authority to allow cannabis retailers and microbusinesses that have licenses to operate cannabis consumption lounges to conduct additional business activities, such as preparing and selling […]
SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Assembly Majority Leader Cecilia Aguiar-Curry (D- Winters) announced today that her Assembly Bill 2223 passed the Assembly Judiciary Committee with a vote of 12-0. AB 2223 will protect public health by eliminating access to intoxicating hemp products, while providing a pathway for well-regulated hemp and cannabis industries to participate in the federal and […]
Sacramento, CA – Today, the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Western States Council applauded the Assembly Business and Professions Committee for passing AB 2223 (Aguiar-Curry), which will facilitate the integration of hemp into the cannabis supply chain in California by regulating hemp cannabinoids in food, beverages, cosmetics, and dietary supplements. Additionally, AB 2223 will […]
UFCW in the News
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Sacramento, CA – Today, the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Western States Council, California Labor Federation and the Prosecutors Alliance of California applauded the Senate Labor Committee for passing SB 1446 (Smallwood-Cuevas), which will protect workers and the public by ensuring safe staffing levels at grocery and drug-retail stores and regulating self-checkout machines. It will also put in place guardrails to prevent worker displacement and harm to workers and the public when retail employers adopt new AI-enabled check-out technology. 

“Our members’ employers have increasingly implemented automated checkout to drastically cut staffing and reduce labor costs,” said John Frahm, president, UFCW Local 5. “Self-checkout, and the subsequent reduction in front-line grocery workers, has created a range of problems for retailers, workers, and the public, including overworked cashiers and an increase in workplace violence and retail theft. The convenience touted in 1986 when self-checkout was introduced does not outweigh worker safety. SB 1446 will protect good jobs and keep workers safe by ensuring there are safe staffing levels for cashiers and regulating self-checkout. We’re proud to sponsor this important legislation.”

In 2011, California passed AB 183 (Ma) in law, which banned the sale of alcohol via self-checkout machines in response to “evidence of inadequate staffing, inconsistent monitoring, and technological failures” at self-checkout that increased illegal purchases of alcohol and harmed public health.1 Since then, self-checkout has rapidly spread in retail grocery and drug stores, with some stores that do not sell alcohol having eliminated checkout staffed by human workers.

“Replacing workers with automated checkout machines has undermined safety for workers and the public. No one feels safe in stores without employees,” said Lorena Gonzalez, Chief Officer of the California Labor Federation, representing 1,300 unions and 2.3 million union members. “In every industry, workers are demanding a say in the use of new technologies to prevent displacement. This bill guarantees safe staffing levels and provides new tools to ensure that technology is not used to destroy good jobs or leave communities without adequate services.”

Self-checkout machines accounted for under 30% of total transactions in 2022, but cost food retailers more than $10 billion in lost profits annually. Nearly 7% of self-checkout transactions have at least some partial shrink compared to 0.32% with cashiers.2 

“Well-staffed stores have more jobs and less shoplifting,” said Cristine DeSoto Berry, the Executive Director of the Prosecutors Alliance of California. “This bill will protect workers, reduce retail theft, and provide a better, safer experience for customers. It’s a win for our communities.” 

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  1. Self-Checkout: Is it Reliable for Selling Alcohol?. Community Economic Development Clinic, UCLA, LAANE. 2009. https://laane.org/research/self-checkout-is-it-reliable/
  2. https://www.producebluebook.com/2023/11/28/study-finds-self-check-has-16x-more-shrink-than-cashier-lanes/

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

April 17, 2024

Contact:

(UFCW) Jenna Thompson, 949.246.1620, [email protected]

Posted under

Sacramento, CA – Today, the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Western States Council applauded the Senate Labor Committee for passing SB 1089 (Smallwood-Cuevas), which will help mitigate the harms from abrupt disruptions in access to food and prescription medication, especially in underserved or at-risk African American communities, by requiring 90-day advance notifications to the affected community, employees, and other stakeholders, before the closure of a grocery store or pharmacy. The following statement may be attributed to Todd Walters, president, UFCW Local 135:

“Our members have come to work in the morning and found out that their store is closing next week and that they would be out of a job. Without advance notice of store closures, they are left in the lurch on how they would pay their rent or put food on their table. Sometimes their customers don’t even hear that their prescription has been moved until the store is already closed. SB 1089 will mitigate these harms by requiring advanced notice so workers and customers can plan ahead, especially in underserved communities, and UFCW is proud to sponsor this important bill.”

SB 1089 is part of the 2024 California Legislative Black Caucus Reparations Priority Bill Package.

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

April 17, 2024

Contact: Jenna Thompson, 949.246.1620, [email protected] 

Posted under

Sacramento, CA – Today the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Western States Council applauded the Assembly Governmental Organization Committee for passing AB 1775 (Haney) to give local governments the authority to allow cannabis retailers and microbusinesses that have licenses to operate cannabis consumption lounges to conduct additional business activities, such as preparing and selling non-cannabis-infused food, selling non-alcoholic beverages, and allowing and selling tickets for live musical or other performances. The following statement may be attributed to Mark Ramos, president, UFCW Western States Council and UFCW Local 1428:

“Allowing cannabis businesses to branch out in a limited capacity will strengthen California’s legal cannabis industry in the face of high taxation, restrictive regulations, and harsh competition from the illicit cannabis market. Current law puts legal cannabis businesses at a disadvantage compared to bars, clubs and other venues that can serve alcohol, not to mention illegal gatherings serving cannabis. California should be doing more, not less to strengthen our cannabis industry and AB 1775 is essential legislation in doing so.”  

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

April 17, 2024

Contact: Jenna Thompson, 949.246.1620, [email protected]