Cannabis industry employees, know your rights!

Cannabis business owners can be held accountable in regards to violations of labor standards, criminal acts, and civil judgments. Too often are cannabis industry employees are lead to believe they have minimal rights in regards to enforcing labor standards , wage claims, work place discrimination, and retaliation claims.

Examples include:

  • Unpaid interships
  • Wage theft
  • Improper worker classification 1099 vs w2
  • Misleading cannabis industry employees through signing of unenforceable arbitration agreements.
  • Workplace discrimination based upon  federally protected classes:
    Religion or creed
    National origin or ancestry
    Physical or mental disability.
    Veteran status
In the event of a labor violation on behalf of a cannabis business , employees have the right to pursue the DLSE (Department of Industrial Relations) to resolve their labor disputes and matters.

“The mission of the California Labor Commissioner’s Office is to ensure a just day’s pay in every workplace in the State and to promote economic justice through robust enforcement of labor laws. By combating wage theft, protecting workers from retaliation, and educating the public, we put earned wages into workers’ pockets and help level the playing field for law-abiding employers. This office is also known as the Division of Labor Standards Enforcement (DLSE).”

As such , cannabis businesses are compelled to settle matters before a judgement or verdict in your favor is awarded by the labor commissioner. The DLSE Labor commissioner has the authority to revoke the license of a cannabis business that is in violation. As well, if a judgement or verdict is reached through an administrative DLSE hearing (Berman hearing) , cannabis businesses MUST notify the Bureau of Cannabis Control within 48 hours. This is an effective deterrent to violating employee rights within the cannabis industry.
§ 5035. Notification of Criminal Acts, Civil Judgments, Violations of Labor Standards, and Revocation of a Local License, Permit, or Other Authorization After Licensure
(c) A licensee shall ensure that the Bureau is notified in writing of an administrative order or civil judgement for violations of labor standards against the licensee or any owner in their individual capacity, either by mail or electronic mail, within 48 hours of delivery of the order. The written notification shall include the date of the order, the name of the agency issuing the order, and a description of the administrative penalty or judgement rendered against the licensee.
(d) A licensee shall ensure that the Bureau is notified in writing of the revocation of a local license, permit, or other authorization, either by mail or electronic mail within 48 hours of receiving notice of the revocation. The written notification shall include the name of the local agency involved, a written explanation of the proceeding or enforcement action, and the specific violation(s) that led to revocation.
Authority: Section 26013, Business and Professions Code. Reference: Sections 26030 and 26031, Business and Professions Code.