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Shangri-La dispensary workers narrowly vote in favor of unionizing; more votes challenged


Workers at the Shangri-La South marijuana dispensary in Columbia voted narrowly Wednesday in favor of forming a union with the United Food and Commercial Workers Local 655.

However, more votes were challenged and remained uncounted after the initial vote than were actually tallied.

The union voters prevailed 6-5, with 16 votes challenged. The National Labor Relations Board will determine what to do with those ballots.

Those eligible to vote include all full- and part-time patient consultants, patient consultant supervisors and inventory specialists.

Workers had to be employed during the payroll period ending on May 21 to vote.

General managers, assistant general managers, inventory supervisors, office clerical employees, professional employees, guards and supervisors are not eligible to vote, according to the NLRB Notice of Election.

This comes after past and current employees picketed outside of Shangri-La on May 16.

The former employees told ABC 17 News that they were let go after the company learned they wanted to unionize. 

"Me and my coworkers wanted to form a union. And, when that got out to the company, they didn't like that and started getting rid of people with very, very vague reasons," former supervisor Andrew Nassbaum said. "A lot of these people left high-paying medical jobs. They're very informed, very educated, and actually care about the patients. We're just trying to stand up for workers' rights and they don't like that."

The company said the fired employees' claims are baseless. 

Check back for updates to this developing story.

Article Topic Follows: Columbia

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Avery Roehler


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