The wave of labor organizing that recently has swept through Arizona’s cannabis industry is not yet slowing.
On September 13, budtenders at a Zen Leaf dispensary in midtown Phoenix became the latest workers to join a union, voting overwhelmingly in favor of organizing. Employees at the location — Zen Leaf Local Joint on East University Drive — filed for an election with the National Labor Relations Board on July 14, and ballots were tallied last week. Ten of the 17 eligible workers participated in the election. They voted 9-1 to form a union.
Budtenders and other workers at Local Joint will be represented by United Food and Commercial Workers, a labor union with more than a million members across cannabis retailers, grocery stores, offices, and airports. The union celebrated the win, writing on social media that Local Joint employees “will begin to bargain a contract to improve working conditions, raise wages, and secure their futures in the industry.”
The dispensary becomes the fourth in Arizona to vote to unionize.
Steve Mazeika, director of communications for Zen Leaf’s parent company, Chicago-based Verano Holdings, said in a statement to Phoenix New Times that the company looks forward to continuing to serve its customers.