Lifelong Teamsters on Rejection of Cannabis Workers…

Lifelong Teamsters on Rejection of Cannabis Workers…


Members of Teamsters Local 777 at Verilife dispensaries in Illinois owned by PharmaCann ratified their first collective bargaining agreements in 2019 early Maywhich offer workers a 20% wage increase, additional full-time jobs, guaranteed tips and employer-sponsored pension contributions.

“This is a perfect example of what can happen when an employer works with us and not against us,” he said Peter Finn, Teamsters Western Region International VP and Food Processing Division Manager. Once ratified, these agreements will apply to over 100 workers.

Thanks to the guidance of the Teamsters, they got a good deal. However, negotiations do not always go so smoothly.

Sometimes even posting pro-union buttons can become a point of contention. Mid-April, Green Thumb Industries Inc. GTBIF, the parent company of Rise pharmacy in Niles, required workers to remove their pro-union buttons while at work, in violation of the National Labor Relations Act. In response, Teamsters Local 777 launched an indefinite strike against unfair labor practices that lasted 13 days. The company increased wages for scabs, but not for workers who refused to picket lines.

According to a Teamsters spokesman, the union called for the pay rise to be extended to all workers and also called for more paid time off. Matt McQuaid. “GTI declined to offer a pay rise to end the strike or pay workers to cross the picket line. The company now faces 10 unfair labor practice charges related to its conduct during the shutdown,” McQuaid said.

For a closer look at how the Teamsters have ramped up support for the cannabis industry, Benzinga spoke up Jim Glimco, a lifelong carter and president of Local 777. He explained that the union, founded in 1903, is one of the oldest of the five largest in the US with 1.2 million members. It now has around 1,000 members in the cannabis industry.

“The Teamsters have…


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