by David Downs
Today, the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union stated in a news release that the National Labor Relations Board is moving to protect workers’ rights at a medical cannabis dispensary in Maine.
The action underscores the federal government’s schizophrenic policy on weed, as dispensary workers in a number of states are serving federal prison sentences for the same occupations the NLRB is now seeking to protect.
The UFCW is in a fight with Wellness Connection of Maine over workers’ rights and is arguing that Wellness Connection - a breakaway division of Berkeley Patients Group - “repeatedly retaliated against workers who stood together to protest the company’s violations of Maine law and interfered with their right to join a union.”
The National Labor Relations Board “has authorized a complaint absent settlement of the charges” UFCW writes, and “has found merit to charges alleging ten separate instances in which Wellness Connection violated the National Labor Relations Act and the rights of its employees.”
“The federal government is prepared to issue a complaint stating that the company unlawfully disciplined workers who collectively blew the whistle on the illicit use of pesticides, and interfered with their right to join the UFCW by interrogating them, creating the impression of surveillance, and soliciting them to oppose the union.”
“The NLRB will also prosecute the company for maintaining several overly broad confidentiality policies that unlawfully prevent employees from discussing their wages and working conditions, absent settlement.”
Congressman Peter Stuckey (D — Portland) states in the UFCW release, "the federal government will prosecute Wellness Connection of Maine for breaking federal law by intimidating and attempting to silence workers who were standing up for those principles.”
Tell that to Stockton dad Matt Davies, surveilled, interrogated, and ultimately sentenced to five years federal prison for running a dispensary. California has had medical marijuana since 1996.
Matthew J. LaMourie, a lawyer for Wellness Connection of Maine, tells Huffington Post the company is working with officials to resolve union claims. “There hasn't been a settlement yet, but we are confident we'll reach one,” he told HuffPo.
Can the NLRB just sue the DOJ, or what?