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Union Cannabis Comes To Oregon

Published Friday, January 4, 2019
by Don McIntosh/NWLaborPress
Union Cannabis Comes To Oregon

(SEATTLE, WASHINGTON) - Seattle-based Cannabis Retail Chain Have a Heart opened its first Oregon store in Salem just after Thanksgiving and on December 15th ratified a Collective Bargaining Agreement with United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Local 555.

The Union Agreement covers 19 employees at the Salem store, plus Workers at any future Oregon locations where a majority sign Union Cards.  It set wages of $15.30 an hour for Budtenders and $16.30 for Lead Shop Workers.  Workers will also get health and pension benefits through trusts sponsored by the International Union.  And - they’ll also get holiday pay, paid time off and bonuses, and will have standard Union Disciplinary Rights.

In addition, a Joint Labor-Management Committee will address safety and the store will also display a Union Shop Card and sell Union-Label cannabis products.

The agreement runs through July 1st, 2021.

The Union Agreement is the second for Have a Heart, which signed a deal on August 24th with Seattle-headquartered UFCW Local 21 that covers 134 Workers at five Washington stores.

At the national level, UFCW has a division for Marijuana Workers known as Cannabis Workers Rising.

Have a Heart isn’t the first Oregon Cannabis Company to sign with UFCW: A company called Stoney Brothers signed a contract for a newly opened Portland shop in July 2015, but the store closed not long after.

Competition in Oregon’s legal cannabis market is fierce, but Have a Heart expects to stick around.  In September, the company announced $25 million in venture capital funding and it’s expanding rapidly.  It now has 16 locations in six states and has 18 pending applications in five additional states.

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