Leafly removes stories about Trulieve factory worker's death
Web site Leafly took down two stories investigating the death of a Trulieve factory worker in Massachusetts.
Lorna McMurrey, 27, died at a hospital in January 2022 after she collapsed during her shift at Trulieve’s factory in Holyoke, Massachusetts. The MSO settled the case with the U.S. Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA), by paying a $14,502 fine and agreeing to study on whether ground cannabis dust should be classified as a “hazardous chemical.”
- Leafly published the two part series on McMurrey’s death in January 2023. The company declined to comment on the articles’ removal.
- Trulieve declined to comment on the articles’ removal or the status of its study.
The first story addresses the controversy surrounding the cause of McMurrey’s death. Initially OSHA listed the cause of death as “occupational asthma due to exposure to ground cannabis” dust. Months later, that finding was revised to state, “an employee who was packaging ground cannabis into pre-rolls at a commercial cannabis processing facility suffered an asthma attack and later died in the hospital.”
Trulieve recently announced that it would exit Massachusetts to focus on its core markets.
News that the stories had been removed from the site was posted this morning by Mike Crawford, host of the Massachusetts podcast The Young Jurks, which broke the story of McMurrey’s death in September.
Dave Howard, who wrote the Leafly stories, told WeedWeek that he hadn’t heard from Leafly and didn’t know why the stories are no longer live. “If the series was taken down for good, that’s disappointing,” he wrote. “I expected it would have a long life there. I worked hard on that series, as did my editor, and we felt it had the potential to help people in the industry. Anytime you have the chance to help someone avoid health problems, you take it.”
In March, amid financial troubles, Leafly shuttered its newsroom and parted ways with editor Bruce Barcott. The site had published several in-depth investigations during his seven year tenure.
The Leafly stories can be found in the Wayback Machine internet archive: