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Labor and Employment Law Program

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Merging law and social science research to influence research, legislation, policy, and litigation.

NYS Cannabis Workforce Initiative

Making Sense of Cannabis and Employment

We provide information and links for employers, workers, entrepreneurs, and others interested in learning about MRTA and accessing licenses, policies, and legislation.

Disclaimer: The content on this site is provided for general informational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for legal advice on any subject matter.  If you need legal advice, please consult an attorney.  Any links to other websites are provided as aids to help you find additional resources and are not intended to be endorsements of those sites.  Cornell University does not guarantee the accuracy of the information on this site and is not responsible for any loss, injury, claim, liability, or damage related to your use of this site or any linked site.  

What Is a Labor Peace Agreement Under MRTA?

Labor Peace Agreements are required to get cannabis licenses under MRTA. Learn what they are and what the law requires.
Worker picking cannabis in field from unsplash by Terre di Cannabis
What Is a Labor Peace Agreement Under MRTA?

Video: The Promise of Social Equity in the Cannabis Industry

Webinar recorded on Feb. 9, 2022 Discussion of the NYS Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act and its social equity goals.
items in a cannabis dispensary
Video: The Promise of Social Equity in the Cannabis Industry

Cannabis Careers for Justice-Impacted

Timothy McNutt, Director of ILR's Criminal Justice and Employment Initiative, participated in the NYS AFL-CIO’s Union Strong Podcast about “Adult-Use Cannabis – Building a new industry from the ground up in a way that will raise revenue, create good union jobs, and address social, racial, and economic equity."
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Cannabis Careers for Justice-Impacted

Links to Additional Resources

The Cannabis Workforce Initiative has a website at Cannabisworkforce.org.  Check out resources there.

 

The NYS Office of Cannabis Management (OCM) is the agency in charge of adult-use cannabis in NYS.  Their site has information on guidelines, regulations, licenses, licensees, etc.  Visit them for important information.

 

The NYS Department of Labor has a Cannabis Workforce Development page that provides information on jobs and training.

 

The SUNY Rockefeller Institute of Government has compiled a tracker of all municipalities that have decided to opt out of adult-use marijuana dispensaries and/or on-site consumption lounges in their jurisdictions. To see this comprehensive list, go to their website at: https://rockinst.org/issue-areas/state-local-government/municipal-opt-out-tracker/.

 

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Cannabis Needs Assessment Survey

As part of our mission to promote and support social equity in the adult-use cannabis industry by providing quality workforce development and legal education, the New York State Cannabis Workforce Initiative is doing a survey of participants involved in cannabis.  We want input from organizations and individuals interested in being part of NY's cannabis industry.  Please complete this survey to let us know of your needs as you consider starting a cannabis business in NYS.

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Cannabis Needs Assessment Survey

Policy Considerations

Changing cannabis laws have significant policy effects on workers, employers, and workplaces.

MRTA Policy Recommendations

The Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act (MRTA) is both social equity and employment legislation with a goal of repairing the damage caused by mass incarceration. The legislation will produce jobs in NYS, and there are policy/implementation issues we suggest be considered.

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Read more about MRTA policy recommendations

All Posts About Cannabis and the Workplace

You can read more, and see all our content about Cannabis and the Workplace.

About

A collaboration between the New York State School of Industrial & Labor Relations at Cornell University and the Workforce Development Institute, our mission is to promote and support social equity in the adult-use cannabis market by providing quality workforce development and legal education. Our work, supported in part by a state budget appropriation, prioritizes diversity, equity and quality jobs in the emerging cannabis industry through skills training, entrepreneurism services, workforce supports, legal education for employees and employers, and the development of high-road career pathways.

  • Research: Determining the needs of the many diverse stakeholders in the cannabis industry and find effective means of delivering resources, while maximizing the economic and social justice benefits of this industry by prioritizing individuals and communities most harmed by the criminalization of cannabis.
  • Community Outreach: Outreach to community leaders, reentry groups, representatives from the adult-use cannabis industry, unions, educators, policy makers, and advocacy groups to form an advisory committee that will help inform our work.
  • Education:
    • Developing training programs to meet the challenges and opportunities of the cannabis industry including recruiting, employing, and retaining workers for established employers and new entrepreneurs, with an emphasis on individuals and communities disproportionately impacted by cannabis prohibition, economically disadvantaged communities, M/WBEs, service-disabled veterans, and distressed farmers.
    • Providing legal and criminal history education about the rights and responsibilities of employers and workers to ensure a fair and equitable workplace for all.

NYS Cannabis Workforce Initiative Surveys Industry

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Cannabis employers see lack of training and skills, as well as lack of awareness of career opportunities, as two of the largest obstacles to achieving social equity in the adult-use market.
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NYS Cannabis Workforce Initiative Surveys Industry

What Is a Labor Peace Agreement Under MRTA?

Labor Peace Agreements are required to get cannabis licenses under MRTA. Learn what they are and what the law requires.
Worker picking cannabis in field from unsplash by Terre di Cannabis
What Is a Labor Peace Agreement Under MRTA?

Video: The Promise of Social Equity in the Cannabis Industry

Webinar recorded on Feb. 9, 2022 Discussion of the NYS Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act and its social equity goals.
items in a cannabis dispensary
Video: The Promise of Social Equity in the Cannabis Industry

MRTA Policy Recommendations

To achieve the social equity goals of MRTA, accountability and education are critical.
cannabis bloom
MRTA Policy Recommendations

Cannabis Needs Assessment Survey

We are doing a survey to gather information to help build a fair and equitable cannabis industry in NYS.
containers of cannabis
Cannabis Needs Assessment Survey