Last week, workers at the Trulieve Cannabis central Phoenix production facility voted 37-4 in favor of unionizing with the United Food and Commercial Workers Union (UFCW) Local 99.
The successful union election at Trulieve Magnolia is the first for Arizona agricultural workers in the cannabis industry, and only the second-ever union election to be administered by the Arizona Agricultural Labor Relations Board (AERB). Established in 1993, the AERB’s statutes are patterned after the National Labor Relations Act, which specifically excludes agricultural workers from its jurisdiction. The last and only time workers petitioned for union recognition through the board was in the year 2000 when workers at the Eurofresh tomato hothouse in Willcox voted to join UFCW Local 99.
Employees at the facility, which the UFCW called "notoriously odiferous," who were eligible to participate in Thursday’s vote included those in certain job classifications within the cultivation and post-harvest departments.
Following the announcement of results by the AERB, UFCW Local 99 President Jim McLaughlin celebrated the historic victory for cannabis workers and thanked the state board for its cooperation throughout the election process.
“Today, employees Trulieve Magnolia have proved that no matter the obstacle, when working people stand together in solidarity and demand better for themselves and their families, there is nothing they cannot achieve,” said McLaughlin. “As we celebrate this historic win for workers, I would also like to commend AERB Executive Secretary Lisa James and the entire board for their commitment to ensuring a free and fair election for all eligible employees.”