Firstly we’d like to thank all of you for participating in last week’s fundraising. We are so proud that you’ve raised over $40K for organizations both in the United States and here in Montreal. But now, we want to talk about what’s next. There’s a lot of talk about taking time to listen and learn and we’d like to be transparent about what we’ve been talking about during this time. While we may be a very small business, that doesn’t mean we can’t take action in big ways.
From the beginning, Nox has always aimed to be an inclusive space: we are pro-queer, pro-Black, and pro-sex work and trauma-informed. As a natural extension of our politics and support of these groups, we are anti-police, we believe in defunding the police and deeply support the right to protest for these aims. This also means, as a white-owned business, that we are aware that we need to be constantly working to learn, to lend our support, and acknowledge our privilege. Our learning includes acknowledging the mistakes we’ve made and the ways we must improve.
Action 1) Donating 10% of Monthly Profits
While we were so pleased to see how much we could raise given our relatively small following, we were also struck with how much, as a small business, we could afford to donate ourselves if we committed to it. With this in mind, we will continue to donate 10% of our monthly profits, in perpetuity, to a rotating list of organizations that not only react to injustice but aim to elevate marginalized communities. We will be transparent and share these organizations with you so you can learn more about them as well. These organizations include, but are not limited to; The Audre Lorde Project, The Loveland Foundation & 2-Spirit Collective, but we will provide updates as we continue learning and finding new organizations to support.
Action 2) A $5K Annual Grant
In researching Black-owned sex shops to redirect you to, we found that the one we were already aware of, Feelmore Adult in Oakland, was the only one we could find. Whether this is truly the only Black-owned sex shop in North America or simply the only one that’s ever gotten any press, it’s clear that there are none being hyped in the same manner that we, along with shops like Unbound Babes and Spectrum Boutique, are. We had been working on a project earlier this year that we’re excited to push forward with a more focused mission. The original goal was an annual $5K grant for businesses that have a difficult time getting bank funding (namely in the sex and cannabis space). We chose $5K because it’s the amount of the personal loan we started Nox with. We have decided to instead narrow the focus to benefit Black and Indigenous-owned businesses in those spaces. We will have more information soon on the specifics of the grant program.
Action 3) Taking the 15% Pledge at Nox Lounge
In building our new sister shop, Nox Lounge, we have committed to ensuring that we take the ‘15% Pledge’ and dedicate at least 15% of our shelf space to Black and Indigenous-owned businesses. This will not be hard as there are so many to choose from, especially in the wellness space, and we encourage you to explore them whether it is through our shop or not. We are also exploring ways to work towards the pledge at Nox, but are confronted by the majority white-owned sex toy companies that we stock. We are not going to use that as an excuse and will continue to add new brands to the Care and Accessories categories as we grow.
Action 4) Hiring More Marginalized Voices for Freelance Work
Nox is a very small, and admittedly very white team—two white women run the day-to-day operations in our studio. A very large part of Nox’s identity is the work we do with freelancers, who direct our conversations around sex and wellness to represent the entire Nox community. We will continue to seek out voices and talent that represent our community but will be more intentional in the ways we ensure Black voices and experiences are given a rightful place in the Nox community.
All our love,