After years of listening to the gut-wrenching wailing of organized labor unions and their more delicate counterparts in public unions, American tax payers are finally getting a bit of peace and quite. The recent legalization of cannabis for recreational use in Washington and Colorado has brought a multi-billion shadow business into the mainstream.
To date, the majority of financing and marketing has been done by criminal cartels. Now that it's legal, the cannabis industry is going to have to play by the same rules as every other American industry. Which means layers upon layers of bureaucratic red tape, which is necessarily expensive to cut through. Enter the union.
The United Food and Commercial Workers' union (UFCW) claims it has over 1.3 million members in the United States. UFCW is actively recruiting members in states like California, where it has an estimated 3,000 members. The UFCW is registered with National Labor Relations Board, and while other unions are bleeding membership, the UFCW is seeing a rise in the number of cannabis workers joining their ranks.
With it's numbers growing, the UFCW is positioning itself to be the most power cannabis lobby in the country. Already the UFCW is helping to write cannabis policy in Washington, Colorado, and California. Unlike the modern labor and public sector unions that do more for union leadership and politicians, UFCW will likely face the same challenges faced by the heroic unions at the beginning of the last century--the federal government.
Growing, transferring, and using cannabis in any form is still a federal crime. However, once the UFCW starts actively representing its members on Capitol Hill, it's likely we'll see the same outcome we saw when labor unions took on big business and big industry in the early 1900s and won. That's what unions are supposed to do. Let's hope the UFCW doesn't disappoint it's 1.3 million members who are risking their liberty by working in the cannabis industry.
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