Areas of Concern for the Health and Safety of Workers in the California Cannabis Industry

Cannabis research assembly line

Event Date

Humboldt State University, Goodwin Forum: Nelson Hall East (NHE) 102

As facilities growing recreational cannabis become licensed in 2018, there is an urgent need for health and safety guidelines applicable to the spectrum of workplaces (both growing and processing sites) found in California. Cannabis, employing over 100,000 workers, is the most valuable agricultural commodity in California, out pacing milk (the second) by a total value of $23.3 to $6.3 billion dollars. Evidence from other states suggest the major health risks include respiratory, chemical and musculo-skeletal exposures, along with fire, explosion and electrical hazards. Prof. Schenker will discuss what we know about the current working population and the state of knowledge about hazards to health found in outdoor and indoor facilities.

Marc B. Schenker, MD, MPH, is a Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Public Health Sciences and Medicine at the UC Davis School of Medicine. He has over 30 years of experience in medicine and public health research, teaching and public service. Dr. Schenker is the founding director of the Davis Center for Occupational and Environmental Health, the Western Center for Agricultural Health and Safety, and the Migration and Health Research Center. His specialty is occupational and environmental disease, with a focus on respiratory and reproductive health. Dr. Schenker also conducts epidemiologic research and public policy advocacy on the health of global migrant populations with a particular focus on farmworkers and occupational disease.