Local 338 - Ensuring That Cannabis Jobs are Good Careers!


New York’s Cannabis Workers Join Local 338 RWDSU

Local 338 RWDSU/UFCW is proud to represent workers across New York State who work across the cannabis industry’s entire supply chain, including cultivation, manufacturing and processing, distribution, and in dispensaries. Local 338 cannabis members work at Be., The Botanist, Curaleaf, Etain, MedMen, Rise Cannabis, Sunnyside, Verilife, Vireo Health, and New York’s first adult-use cannabis dispensary – Housings Works Cannabis Co. Our members are proud to work in the cannabis industry and are incredibly passionate about their work – putting patients and consumers at the forefront from seed to sale.

Since New York’s medical cannabis program officially launched in 2015, Local 338 has been successfully engaged in organizing efforts to ensure that the jobs in this emerging industry set a standard for what cannabis careers can and should be, by providing family sustaining wages and benefits. We have negotiated union contracts that provide our members in the cannabis industry with guaranteed wage increases, full-time guarantees, paid time off, premium healthcare benefits (paid for by the employer) for workers and their families, access to retirement savings and on-the-job training, amongst other invaluable workplace protections.

 We recognize that most New Yorkers who will be entering the cannabis industry – both in medical and adult use – will be doing so as workers and that’s why we believe in good cannabis jobs and long-term careers. It is essential that union contracts and the high road employment that we’ve helped to create are open and accessible to all, particularly to communities most impacted by the prohibition of cannabis. 

Check out this report released by the Economic Policy Institute highlighting the union difference in the cannabis industry for workers: https://www.epi.org/publication/ensuring-the-high-road-in-cannabis-jobs/

Our History Advocating for New York’s Cannabis Laws

To better understand the needs and issues of the cannabis industry and its workforce, representatives from Local 338 have been working with leaders, scientists, advocates, and workers from across the cannabis industry since before the passage of the Compassionate Care Act in 2014. We helped craft and advocate for the Compassionate Care Act to serve New York’s cannabis patients and their families, and along the way have positioned ourselves as a partner for New York’s cannabis workers. 

Local 338 spent the years following the passage of the Compassionate Care Act advocating to expand patient access to the medical cannabis program and pushing for the full legalization of adult-use cannabis, including critical policies and programs that support social and economic justice. With the help of our member activists working in the cannabis industry, who spent time in Albany speaking directly with lawmakers about the opportunities cannabis legalization would bring to New Yorkers, the New York State Legislature passed the Marijuana Regulation and Taxation (Act) (MRTA) on March 30, 2021.
Carlos de los Santos at Sunnyside

Carlos de los Santos

Alexander Chu at MedMen

Alexander Chu

Liz Ferran at PharmaCann

Liz Ferran


Mariela Dominguez

Vireo Health

Vireo Health Local 338
Members In the grow

Katie Serdula at CuraLeaf

Katie Serdula

We are now working with New York State and the Office of Cannabis Management as regulations continue to be developed to ensure the creation of thousands of quality union cannabis careers and maximize social equity programs in our state.

The MRTA – New York’s cannabis law - created the framework for New York’s cannabis industry and includes clear protections for working people, with opportunities for communities to thrive whether they want to enter it as a worker or entrepreneur. When we fought for this legislation, we knew that it had to serve all communities across New York, which is why we advocated for the creation of a social equity and community reinvestment fund and criminal justice reforms for workers by sealing and expunging conviction histories. New York’s cannabis industry is one that will benefit all working people, regardless of their background. 

In addition to advocating for the legalization of adult-use cannabis and creating equity through job opportunities, we have been focusing on workforce development in the cannabis industry. Our goal is to ensure new workers in the industry are well-trained and first-time cannabis business owners have the resources they need to thrive and grow in New York’s emerging industry. To learn more the program, our partners in this important work, and to sign up for the education modules, visit: cannabisworkforce.org
Cannabis Members in Albany New York
Amy Pawlusik of Medmen

Amy Pawlusik

Eric Rosen of PharmaCann

Eric Rosen

Maelisa Rivera of PharmaCann

Maelisa Rivera

Murugan Naidu of MedMen

Murugan Naidu


Are you a cannabis worker?
Interested in becoming a UNION cannabis worker?

Local 338 has played a key role in setting the standard for jobs in this emerging industry for what cannabis careers can and should be. Our collective bargaining agreements provide our members with family-sustaining wages and benefits, guaranteed wage increases, full-time guarantees, paid time off, premium healthcare benefits (which are paid for by the employer) for workers and their families, access to retirement savings, and on-the-job training, amongst other invaluable workplace protections. 

All workers in New York’s cannabis industry should be given the same benefits and protections as the ones we secure in our contracts—however, it is not guaranteed in nonunion workplaces. When you have a union in your workplace, you have people who will support you and fight to make sure you receive basic protections such as paid time off, health insurance and guaranteed wage increases.

If you are a cannabis worker and are interested in joining our union family or have questions about organizing, please reach out to Local 338’s Cannabis Representative & Organizer Luca Negrino at (516) 591-9349 or via email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
Jessica Nosowicz of Medmen

Jessica Nosowicz

Ethan Hayes of Vireo Health

Ethan Hayes

Vireo Health
Sara Liles of PharmaCann

Sara Liles

Alon Tov at Vireo Health

Alon Tov

Vireo Health
Suzanne Kuczka & Jamie Levergood of MedMen

Suzanne Kuczka & Jamie Levergood

Zeion Porter of Curaleaf

Zeion Porter



Are You Applying for a License or Need Information on Labor Peace Agreements?

The Marijuana Regulation & Taxation ACT (MRTA) requires that a license applicant must enter into a labor peace agreement (LPA) with a bona-fide labor organization. Any business applying for a medical or adult-use license under the MRTA, regardless of size of the business or number of workers, must demonstrate they have a signed LPA to receive a license and maintaining an LPA is an ongoing condition of licensure after the initial license has been awarded. To comply with New York State law, we have crafted a standard LPA document that satisfies the goals of the statute, including: 

  • Terms prohibiting labor organizations and members from engaging in picketing, work stoppages, boycotts, and any other economic interference with the entity, 
  • Language ensuring an employer remains neutral toward a unionization campaign in the workplace, 
  • Provisions governing access to the workforce by the union to ensure free and open communication without disrupting workers, as well as a card check agreement, which ensures the workers choice is respected.

Please note that there is no cost for a labor peace agreement, and applicants should not expect to pay a fee for this document. 

For more information about labor peace agreements or to begin the process of securing one for your application, please visit: cannabislpa.com or email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Devin Friedland at CuraLeaf

Devin Friedland

Karly Shanahan at PharmaCann

Karly Shanahan

Brian Fredericks at Vireo Health

Brian Fredericks

Vireo Health
Cassandra Reustle at Citiva

Cassandra Reustle

Dominique Alexandre at Vireo Health

Dominique Alexandre

Vireo Health


Local 338 proudly represents cannabis workers at the following companies:

We are currently in contract negotiations on behalf of the workers at: