Victoria, B.C. – June 28, 2021 – Cannabis workers at Trees Cannabis in Victoria, British Columbia have voted to join other budtenders as part of the BC Bud Division of UFCW Local 1518. The Trees Cannabis workers have been grappling with low wages, a lack of access to paid sick days, and working without breaks, all while serving the public as essential workers during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Recognizing the important work that they do while continuing to assume risks by interacting with members of the public, workers decided to rally together to fight for better wages and to help shape their work environment.
“We are required to have a deep understanding of the cannabis plant and are expected to provide compassionate customer service,” Kate, a Trees Cannabis supervisor, explains. “This goes above and beyond traditional retail work. To help us thrive in these roles, we should be given a living wage, receive pay for ongoing education, and have collective bargaining power to decide how our job is done,” she adds.
The Local Union and Trees Cannabis workers will begin negotiating workplace improvements with the employer over the next few months. In the past, BC BUD Division members have bargained for and won cannabis sommelier training, enhanced store security, increased wages, and other key improvements to their working conditions.
More and more budtenders are joining the union for cannabis workers in British Columbia, UFCW 1518. Budtenders and cannabis industry workers who are interested in winning improvements at their workplace can join the UFCW 1518 BC BUD Division and learn more at www.ufcw1518.com/cannabis.
UFCW Local 1518 represents more than 26,000 members working in the community health, hospitality, retail, cannabis, industrial, and professional sectors across British Columbia. To read more about UFCW 1518 and its outstanding work, visit the Local Union’s website.